Algerian hostage death toll rises, urgent hunt for missing

GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – The number of hostages who were killed in last week’s raid on a gas plant in Algeria remains unclear, with Reuters reporting at 09:30 Monday 21 January that the number is up to 60, with confirmation from the Japanese government that 12 of its citizens died. The BBC was reporting Monday morning […]

Mali exodus underway as uncertainty takes over

GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – The world’s refugee population is ballooning, with a new exodus from Mali underway prompting the UN refugee organization in Geneva to say that 300,000 people inside Mali will need help and 407,000 in neighbouring countries in coming days. There are currently 147,000 Malian refugees, mainly in six countries in the region, a […]

Update 2, Algeria gas plant army operation: confusion over death toll

GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – Breaking news: Numbers vary hugely for the number of hostages and militants who died as the Algerian army moved in to free the hostages held by Islamist militants in one of the largest hostage crises in years. Reuters, which is following the story closely, says “ANI and Qatar-based Al Jazeera reported that […]

Mali conflict spills over to Algeria, with hostages seized (update)

Algerian troops surround factory Some 50 of the hostages are reported to have escaped – details sketchy Update 13:30  GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – Some 50 of the hostages are reported by French and Algerian media to have escaped from the gas plant in Algeria that is under siege. A number of foreign workers at a gas […]

Ben Bella, Algeria’s first president, dies

GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – Algeria’s first president, Ahmed Ben Bella, died Wednesday 11 April at the age of 93, in Alger, a few days after the country marked the 50th anniversary of its independence from France. Ben Bella joined the anticolonialist resistance after serving during the Second World War in the Free French forces in Europe. […]

Governments in Arab world put on pause

Friday in the Arab world has dawned with relative quiet, albeit a likely temporary pause, as the position of several governments in many places shifts. Egypt: widespread rumours that appear to have started with the New York Times have the US and President Hosmi Mubarak discussing his departure with a three-head government to replace him. […]

Violence spreads in Tunisia, Algeria

More violent clashes by people protesting the high cost of living and scant job opportunities in Tunisia have left at least 14 dead over the weekend 9 and 10 January in Thala, Kasserine and Rgeb, cities southwest of the capital Tunis, according to Al-Jazeera, citing state media. French newspaper Le Monde has counted at least […]

Swiss football team down one man, other teams arrive

La Nati - The Swiss national football team

Geneva, Switzerland (GenevaLunch) – The Swiss football team is down one man due to injury. The Swiss football federation announced Christoph Spycher’s knee injury is preventing him from playing at the World Cup. Spycher had planned to retire after the world championship but his injury is forcing him into early retirement. The defender will be […]

Russia to increase arms sales by 12% this year

India, Algeria, China, Venezuela, Malaysia and Syria are the main customers for the Russian arms industry, which expects to see a 12 percent increase in international sales in 2010, to $9.5 billion. Vietnam also recently became a client, ordering submarines, aircraft and “other military hardware”, reports Russian news agency Ria Novosti. Russia’s main competitors are […]

Mubarak riding high as FIFA investigates violence in Algeria-Egypt World Cup qualifier

Zurich, Switzerland (GenevaLunch) – President Hosni Mubarak of Egypt has benefited from an outpouring of nationalist fervour following the Egyptian soccer team’s loss to Algeria after two qualifying matches 14 and 18 November. The fallout from the football matches has included Egyptians being attacked in Algiers, Algeria, and a rupture in diplomatic ties between the […]