Today 08 December
Bangui (Central African Republic) (AFP) - Terrified Bangui residents anxiously waited for French troops to secure the city on Sunday before emerging from their homes after a wave of sectarian violence killed hundreds. The French force received a triumphant welcome on Saturday as it deployed across other parts of the Central African Republic in a bid to stem the chaos that has gripped the country since a March coup. The communal strife that has wracked the Central African bush for months flared in Bangui on Thursday, killing nearly 400 people. "We have counted 394 dead in the last three days," French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said on France 3 television.
By Ed Cropley and Olivia Kumwenda-Mtambo JOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - With hymns and eulogies, South Africans of all colors and creeds remembered Nelson Mandela in a day of prayers on Sunday, holding him up as a symbol of freedom, forgiveness and hope for the nation and the world. Mandela, South Africa's first black president who steered his nation out of apartheid and into multi-racial democracy, died on Thursday at the age of 95 after months of illness. Crowds have piled flowers, candles, balloons and messages outside his Johannesburg home. At the cavernous Regina Mundi church in Soweto, South Africa's largest Catholic Church, hundreds of mourners, young and old, gathered to pray for Mandela and the nation's future.
British Prime Minister David Cameron will attend the memorial service for Nelson Mandela in South Africa next week and Prince Charles will attend the funeral several days later, officials said on Sunday. As expected, Queen Elizabeth II will not make the journey, although she has expressed how "deeply saddened" she was by the former South African president's death on Thursday. The monarch, 87, has begun cutting down her long-distance foreign trips, and asked her son and heir Charles to represent her at the Commonwealth heads of government meeting in Sri Lanka last month. "Her Majesty The Queen will be formally represented at the funeral of Nelson Mandela by His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales on Sunday 15th December in Qunu, South Africa," said a statement from Buckingham Palace.
Soweto (South Africa) (AFP) - In death, as in life, Nelson Mandela has united a nation. But his legacy of tolerance and racial harmony is sorely tested by the tough realities of life in today's South Africa. Across the Rainbow Nation, from towns on the shimmering Indian Ocean to cities on the sprawling Highveld, South Africans of all creeds and colours prayed in memory of their hero on Sunday. Amid the pangs of sorrow, Mandela's death has rekindled that same spirit of unity that two decades before allowed South Africa to avert bloody racial violence and all out civil war.
Durban (South Africa) (AFP) - South African batting prodigy Quinton de Kock hit his second successive century in the second one-day international against India at Kingsmead in Durban on Sunday. De Kock made 106 in a South African total of 280 for six in a match reduced to 49 overs a side after a late start because of a wet outfield. Three days after the death of Nelson Mandela both teams wore black armbands and the players and crowd stood for a minute’s silence in memory of the former South African president. Hashim Amla also hit a century, making exactly 100.