19 Stories

Russia Suffers Embarrassing Pair of Space Mishaps

Admits this week it has lost contact with 2 satellites

(Newser) - "The situation is being analyzed." Such is the pronouncement from the Kremlin following a pair of embarrassing space-related mishaps. On Wednesday, Russian Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin revealed that human error was responsible for the loss of a $45 million weather satellite called Meteor-M; the rocket carrying that... More »

40+ Years in Solitary: 'Ask Me in 20 Years' How Freedom Feels

Albert Woodfox of 'Angola 3' was in isolation more than any other inmate in US history

(Newser) - Albert Woodfox, the last of the famous "Angola Three," was released from prison last February after pleading no contest to manslaughter in the 1972 killing of prison guard Brent Miller. In a piece for the New Yorker , Rachel Aviv offers some insight into the "reserved" and "... More »

Newly Found $20M Diamond Is Size of a Credit Card

404.2-carat diamond thought to be 27th largest ever found

(Newser) - One of the largest diamonds ever recorded has been pulled from the ground in Angola. Australia's Lucapa Diamond Company announced Monday that a 404.2-carat white diamond, about the length of a credit card, had been discovered. The find came at a 1,148 square-mile site that has since... More »

Papers: Kissinger Made Plan to 'Smash' Cuba

Infuriated secretary of state sought airstrikes because of Angola incursion

(Newser) - The co-author of a new book about negotiations between the US and Cuba says Henry Kissinger was the secretary of state who tried the hardest, in secret, to establish normal relations with Havana, NPR reports. So when Castro launched a military mission in Angola in late 1975, Kissinger was "... More »

World's Priciest City Is Dirt Poor

Luanda tops expat list once again

(Newser) - Most people in Luanda scrape by on a few dollars a day, but the Angolan capital has topped a list of the world's most expensive cities for expatriates for another year . Business consultancy Mercer says the high cost of imported goods and "secure living accommodations" has made the... More »

Prince Harry 'Irritated' Over Nations Ignoring Landmines

Has 'bee in his bonnet' about mine-supplying nations not being mine-clearing nations

(Newser) - Prince Harry is "irritated" that nations responsible for supplying landmines aren't doing more to help clear them, according to the head of a British mine-clearing charity. The prince reportedly expressed these sentiments after visiting Angola to witness the work of the Halo Trust first-hand, the BBC reports. His... More »

Africa Sees Its First Woman Billionaire

Isabel dos Santos is daughter of Angolan president

(Newser) - Africa's got its first female billionaire. Thanks to her shares in Portuguese and Angolan companies, Isabel dos Santos, 40, is now worth more than $1 billion, Forbes reports. The daughter of Jose Eduardo dos Santos, the 33-year president of Angola, she opened her first business, an Angola restaurant, at... More »

Angola Kicks Out China 'Gangsters'

Kidnapping, extortion, human trafficking among alleged crimes

(Newser) - Chinese police today brought back 37 suspected Chinese gangsters from Angola, where they were arrested for alleged crimes against other Chinese such as kidnapping, armed robbery, extortion, human trafficking, and forced prostitution. Such crimes are a major concern for China, which has become Africa's main trading partner and a... More »

World's Most Expensive City Is ... Luanda?

Civil war has led to staggering prices in Angola's capital

(Newser) - If you thought the most expensive city in the world was someplace like London or New York, wait until you get a load of the prices in Luanda, Angola. A house will set you back $10,000 a month, a hotel room $400 a night, and an SUV rental $200... More »

'Blood Diamonds' Are Back

This time, the problem isn't rebels, it's corrupt governments

(Newser) - The diamond industry says 99% of its gems for sale these days are "conflict-free," meaning it has wiped out the so-called "blood diamond" trade. A visit to Angola by Michael Allen of the Wall Street Journal knocks a big hole in that claim. "A violent economy... More »

Death Toll in Togo Team Ambush Rises to 3

National soccer team pulls out of African tournament

(Newser) - Togo's national soccer team pulled out of an African soccer tournament today following a deadly attack on their bus in Angola. A goalie for the team said on French radio that the death toll has risen to three, with the victims apparently being the bus driver, an assistant coach, and... More »

Gunmen Ambush Togo's Soccer Team in Angola

Driver dead; players among 9 injured

(Newser) - The national soccer team of the African nation of Togo was ambushed by gunmen today as it traveled by bus into Angola; the driver was killed and at least two players are among the nine people injured. A separatists group in the enclave of Cabinda claimed responsibility, Reuters reports, noting... More »

Cambodia Bans 'Miss Landmine' Beauty Pageant

Government sees insult; organizers aimed to promote awareness

(Newser) - The Cambodian government said today it will not allow a "Miss Landmine" beauty pageant to take place later this week, calling it an insult to the disabled. "The land mine beauty contest would make a mockery of Cambodia's land mine victims," a government spokesman said. "The... More »

2 Teens Die in Pope Stampede

(Newser) - Two teenage girls were killed in a wild stampede as people rushed to view Pope Benedict in Angola yesterday, reports the Times of London. Some 30,000 people raced into a stadium where the pope spoke at a youth rally. The teenagers died at the scene and dozens were injured.... More »

Pope to Angolans: Convert Witchcraft Believers

(Newser) - The Pope urged Catholics in Angola to reach out and convert witchcraft believers frightened by “evil powers,” the AP reports. “In today's Angola, Catholics should offer the message of Christ to the many who live in the fear of spirits,” a fear that can lead them... More »

Angola Closes Border With Congo to Block Ebola

Outbreak has allegedly killed 13, infected 40

(Newser) - An outbreak of Ebola in the Democratic Republic of Congo has caused Angolan authorities to close part of their border with the country, Reuters reports. Angolans will be forbidden to travel to the DRC from the northeastern province of Norde Lunde. The Ebola outbreak is suspected of infecting 40 and... More »

McCain Guru's Work for Foreign Dictators Draws Fire

Angola's Savimbi, Philippines' Marco haunt Charlie Black's clients list

(Newser) - A client list that included dictators in Angola, the Philippines, Kenya, and Somalia is now haunting a key strategist for John McCain, the Washington Post reports, with Democrats baying over Charlie Black’s lobbying record. Black was among the earliest users of the revolving door between lobbying and campaign consulting... More »

Chinese Weapons Ship May Head Home

Guns may not reach Zimbabwe

(Newser) - China may recall the ship carrying arms to Zimbabwe, thanks to stonewalling by its Southern African neighbors, the BBC reports. Coastal nations are refusing to allow the ship to dock, worried that the weapons will be used to escalate Zimbabwe’s tense post-election standoff. The ship may yet find harbor... More »

Wealth Doesn't Always Aid Health

UN finds child mortality rates uneven in developing nations

(Newser) - Citing new child mortality statistics, analysts say a nation's wealth doesn’t always translate into better health for its youngest citizens, the BBC reports. Every year, 10 million children die before their fifth birthday, with 99% of the fatalities occurring in the developing world. But even when conditions improve, survival... More »

19 Stories