By Abdi Sheikh MOGADISHU (Reuters) - A Somali clan leader who fought for years to retake a strategic southern port city he once controlled has laid down arms and joined talks, bolstering government efforts to show it can restore order to a chaotic nation. The fate of the city of Kismayu and the surrounding region of Jubbaland is seen as a test of Mogadishu's skill in building a federal system of government and pacifying a nation fought over for more than two decades by warlords and Islamist rebels. Dozens of people were killed in clashes last year when Barre Hirale's forces battled to regain control of Kismayu from the Ras Kamboni militia loyal to Ahmed Madobe, who had been chosen in May by a regional assembly to preside over Jubbaland. The African Union force AMISOM, which has been involved in reconciliation efforts, said Hirale and nearly 100 members of his militia gave up their weapons on Saturday after discussions with clan elders and Somali federal government delegations.
HONG KONG (AP) — Hong Kong pro-democracy lawmakers disrupted a Beijing official's speech Monday as he sought to explain a decision announced over the weekend to tightly limit voting reforms for the southern Chinese financial hub.
By Mathieu Bonkoungou OUAGADOUGOU (Reuters) - Niger's parliament speaker and leading opposition figure Hama Amadou, who is wanted for questioning in his home country on suspicion of involvement in baby-trafficking, has flown to Europe, officials in Burkina Faso said on Sunday. Hama, a former ally turned political rival of President Mahamadou Issoufou, had fled to the Burkinabe capital Ouagadougou on Thursday after parliamentary leaders in Niger authorised his arrest. "He left Ouagadougou on Friday night on a Brussels Airlines flight to Brussels," a senior security source told Reuters.