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German President Says He Will Try to Find Rebel Leader's Skull

He apologizes for colonial-era killing in Tanzania

(Newser) - Germany's president on Wednesday apologized for killings under colonial rule in Tanzania more than a century ago and vowed to seek answers to questions about that era that leave Tanzanians no peace. President Frank-Walter Steinmeier, on a visit to the southern Tanzanian city of Songea, noted that many bones...

DNA Links Africa's Stolen Skulls With Living Descendants

Germany to return skulls tied to Chagga people of Tanzania, stolen under colonial rule

(Newser) - Scientists have for the first time identified living descendants of people whose skulls were pillaged from Africa under German colonial rule. Since 2017, Berlin's Museum of Prehistory and Early History has been working to trace at least 1,100 of 7,700 skulls it acquired from a local hospital...

Death Toll Hits 19 in Lake Victoria Plane Crash

Fisherman hailed as hero for efforts to rescue survivors of Tanzania crash

(Newser) - A plane crashed Sunday morning into Lake Victoria as it approached an airport in Tanzania, killing 19 people on board, the country's prime minister said. A senior policeman said it was raining when the aircraft plunged into the water. Prime Minister Kassim Majaliwa raised the death toll up from...

'Uncompromising' Writer Takes Home Nobel for Literature

Abdulrazak Gurnah of Tanzania began writing as a 21-year-old refugee in exile

(Newser) - The 2021 Nobel Prize for literature was announced Thursday, an award that has in the past honored poets, novelists, and even a songwriter, Bob Dylan. The AP reports that Tanzanian writer Abdulrazak Gurnah took home the top award, with the Swedish Academy noting the Nobel was in recognition of Gurnah'...

2 African Countries Finally Relent on COVID Vaccines

Burundi is one of the last countries to accept vaccines

(Newser) - Burundi’s government now says it will accept COVID-19 vaccines, becoming one of the last countries in the world to embrace them. But the health ministry says that while it will store the doses, it will not take responsibility for any side effects they might cause, the AP reports. Health...

Leader Who Claimed Country Eliminated COVID Dies

Tanzania's vice president says John Magafuli died from heart failure

(Newser) - President John Magufuli of Tanzania, a prominent COVID-19 skeptic in Africa whose populist rule often cast his East African country in a harsh international spotlight, has died. He was 61 years old. Magufuli's death was announced on Wednesday by Vice President Samia Suluhu, who said the president died of...

Tanzanian Miner Again Hits Paydirt, Sells $2M Gem
Miner Cashes In Again

Miner Cashes In Again

New find brings $2M, after a $3.4M haul in June

(Newser) - The small-scale miner in Tanzania who sold two of his finds for $3.4 million in June has made another big sale. Saniniu Laizer collected $2 million for a 14-pound Tanzanite stone, the BBC reports. The rare gemstones—which a geologist said could be gone in 20 years—are found...

This Small-Scale Miner Just Became a Millionaire
With 2 Rocks, Small-Scale
Miner Strikes It Rich
in case you missed it

With 2 Rocks, Small-Scale Miner Strikes It Rich

Saniniu Laizer earns $3.4M from sale of 2 largest known tanzanite gems

(Newser) - A miner in Tanzania has become an overnight millionaire with the discovery and sale of the two largest known tanzanite gemstones ever found. Until last week, the largest known chunk of tanzanite—one of the world's rarest gemstones, believed to be found only in a small northern region of...

Trump Issues New Travel Ban
Trump Issues
New Travel Ban

Trump Issues New Travel Ban

But critics decry the move as racist or nakedly political

(Newser) - President Trump has expanded his 2017 travel ban to include six more countries with sizeable Muslim populations, USA Today reports. Announced Friday, the new plan will block overseas visas for nationals of Nigeria, Myanmar, Kyrgyzstan, and Eritrea, and keep people from Tanzania and Sudan from entering America via the diversity...

Fatal Underwater Proposal Wasn't Drowning: Sister

Steven Weber's family is questioning the story, says sister Mandy Hoffman

(Newser) - The sister of a Louisiana man who died while proposing to his girlfriend last week isn't convinced he really drowned, the New York Post reports. "This is all we keep talking about," says Mandy Hoffman. "Something other happened besides him running out of breath." Her...

Man Proposes Underwater, Never Comes Back Up

Steven Weber was proposing to girlfriend Kenesha Antoine in Tanzania

(Newser) - An American who proposed to his girlfriend underwater never emerged to hear "I do," CNN reports. Steven Weber was on vacation in Tanzania with Kenesha Antoine in a cabin with a submerged bedroom when he apparently made the fatal proposal. "You never emerged from those depths, so...

Dozens Killed, 70 Injured in Fuel Tanker Blast

Blast occurred in Morogoro, Tanzania, while people were siphoning fuel from damaged truck

(Newser) - A damaged tanker truck exploded in eastern Tanzania Saturday as people were trying to siphon fuel out of it, killing at least 57, police say. A regional police commissioner tells local media that many other people suffered burns in the explosion in the town of Morogoro. The BBC reports as...

The Ferry Capsized. But Someone Was Alive Inside

Engineer Augustine Charahani struggled for survival

(Newser) - Ferry, upside-down. Engine room, flooding. Air pocket, shrinking. But engineer Augustine Charahani found the peace of mind to curl up on a flight of stairs and wait over 40 hours in the hope rescuers would find him, the New York Times reports. His ordeal began Sept. 20 in Lake Victoria,...

Abducted Going to Gym, Billionaire Turns Up Near Tennis Court

Mohammed Dewji is now safe at home in Tanzania after 9-day ordeal

(Newser) - Africa's youngest billionaire is back home. Mohammed Dewji, who was seized Oct. 11 by masked gunmen while headed to the gym in the Tanzanian city of Dar es Salaam, has been released, the BBC reports. "I have returned home safely," his company, MeTL Group, quoted the 43-year-old...

'Shock' as African Billionaire Is Kidnapped

Mohammed Dewji vowed to donate half his $1.5B to charity

(Newser) - A man reported to be Tanzania's only billionaire and the youngest one in Africa has been kidnapped in what the BBC is calling a "huge shock." Mohammed Dewji was seized by masked gunmen Thursday morning as he entered a hotel gym in the Tanzanian city of Dar...

Surprise Found in Capsized Ferry's Engine Room

Seems one man locked himself in there

(Newser) - A survivor has been found inside a capsized Tanzanian ferry two days after the disaster on Lake Victoria, an official said Saturday, while coffins arrived for at least 167 victims and counting, the AP reports. An engineer was found near the engine of the upturned vessel, Mwanza regional commissioner John...

44 Dead as Ferry Capsizes on Lake Victoria

Not clear how many were onboard

(Newser) - At least 44 people died when after a passenger ferry capsized on Lake Victoria, a Tanzanian official said late Thursday, and the death toll was expected to rise when rescue efforts resumed at daybreak. Thirty-seven people were rescued after the sinking Thursday afternoon, Mwanza regional commissioner John Mongella told the...

Beloved Conjoined Twins Die After Months in Hospital

Maria and Consolata, who were joined from the navel down, died Saturday

(Newser) - Tanzania's beloved conjoined twin sisters, Maria and Consolata Mwakikuti, have died at the age of 21. Known for their determination and desire to overcome obstacles and gain an education as much as for their rare condition, the sisters were so well-known even Tanzania's president John Magufuli tweeted about...

East Africa Doesn't Want 'Clothes of Dead White People' Anymore

And the US isn't happy about it

(Newser) - Seventy percent of donated second-hand clothing ends up in Africa, and a number of African nations are tired of it, the New York Times reports. Last year, Rwanda, Uganda, Tanzania, South Sudan, Burundi, and Kenya raised import tariffs on what Kenyans call the "clothes of dead white people" so...

Thirst for Ivory Threatens Hippos, Too
Hippos in Danger Because
of Desire for Their Teeth

Hippos in Danger Because of Desire for Their Teeth

Mismanagement in trade of hippo teeth a bad sign: researchers

(Newser) - It isn't only elephants that are suffering from humans' insatiable thirst for ivory. A new study notes hippopotamuses, already predicted by some to disappear within 100 years, may be dying at unexpected rates to fuel the trade of ivory ornaments made from hippo teeth. Since 1975, 1.7 million...

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