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US air strike in Afghanistan
Ten children killed by US air strike in Afghanistan
25 March 2019, 12:10 PM

Ten children, part of the same extended family, were killed by a US air strike in Afghanistan, along with three adult civilians, the United Nations said on Monday.

The air strike early on Saturday was part of a battle between the Taliban and combined Afghan and US forces that lasted about 30 hours in Kunduz, a northern province where the Taliban is strong.

The children and their family had been displaced by fighting elsewhere in the country, the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA) said in releasing its preliminary findings about the incident.

UNAMA said in a statement that it is verifying that all 13 civilian casualties occurred around the time of the air strike.

Three other civilians were injured. The incident happened in the Telawka neighbourhood near Kunduz city.

A record number of Afghan civilians were killed in 2018 as aerial attacks and suicide bombings increased, the United Nations said in a February report.

Child casualties from air strikes have increased every year since 2014.

 

SADC summit
SADC solidarity conference under way
25 March 2019, 9:44 AM

Deputy Minister of International Relations and Cooperation Luwellyn Landers says the SADC summit is being held to demonstrate solidarity with the people of Western Sahara.

He says the intention of the solidarity conference is to support the people of the Western Sahara on their demands for a separate independent state.

South Africa is hosting the Southern African Development Community (SADC) solidarity conference with the Saharawi Arab Democratic Republic in Pretoria Monday and Tuesday.

For full interview click video below:

Taxi violence in Soweto
NTA working on plan to end taxi violence in Soweto
25 March 2019, 8:19 AM

The National Taxi Alliance (NTA) says it is working on an operational plan that will be followed by the two feuding Soweto taxi associations, WATA and NANDUWE, that will ensure the end to taxi violence in the area.

This is an attempt to try and persuade Gauteng Roads and Transport MEC Ismail Vadi to lift the closure of their ranks and routes.

This is the second week that the closure has been in place and will continue until June.

The NTA, which represents both taxi associations, says the plan aims to bring to an end the turf wars that’s claimed the lives of three people and injured a number of people including commuters since January 2019.

NTA spokesperson Theo Malele is optimistic,”We have made some progress, although not sufficiently. We are still trying to get one party to agree on the operational plan. Once that has been done, we will then engage authorities on the way forward. We anticipate by midweek latest there should be some progress.”

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SAUS welcomes decision to allocate millions to student’s historic debt
25 March 2019, 8:12 AM

South African Union (SAUS) spokesperson Thabo Shingange has welcomed Higher Education and Training Minister Naledi Pandor’s decision to allocate R967 million to indebted students.

The union says the decision resonates with their demand of clearing historical debt of South African students.

They believe the relief will assist to ease the financial pressure on students.

Meanwhile, Sasco says the amount allocated to historical debt is not enough to ease all the challenges faced by students.

Over 50 000 tertiary students are debt free after the minister announced on Sunday that their historical debt has been settled.

The Department allocated nearly R1 billion to NSFAS to scrap student’s historical debt.

Pandor said that this is confirmation that government is sensitive to the plight of students from poor and working-class families.

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Divide Tour, Ed Sheeran concert
Fans impressed with Ed Sheeran concert organisation
25 March 2019, 6:34 AM

Concertgoers have expressed joy at the high-level of safety during this weekend’s Ed Sheeran concert in Johannesburg.

Security concerns were heightened after FNB Stadium turned into a crime hotspot at the Global Citizen Festival in December.

Load shedding could not put a damper on the event either, leaving no fans disappointed.

People have expressed content online and commended the well-planned event.

More than 60 000 fans gathered at FNB Stadium to watch the pop star perform some of his greatest hits.

Ed Sheeran delivered a perfect performance at his Divide Tour, even wearing a South African t-shirt and waving the national flag.

The Johannesburg Metro Police assured people prior to the event that they were well prepared for the concerts and had deployed dozens of its officials in and around the venue.

At least four suspects were arrested for smash-and-grab incidents.

A JMPD chopper also flew overhead to scan the vicinity.

Click video below:

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