News South Sudanese government soldiers wait to board trucks and pickups; a cessation of hostilities agreement in Addis Ababa that should at the least put a pause to five weeks of warfare has been reached

Government and rebel leaders in South Sudan have signed a ceasefire – the first step towards peace in the country after five weeks of violence in which more than 1,000 people have been killed and hundreds of thousands forced from their homes.

Fears that Eritrea may be hiding its famine victims from the world

Concerns are mounting of a possible hidden famine in Eritrea while international aid agencies scramble to fill a "black hole" in information coming out of the isolated Horn of Africa nation.

10 million displaced Somalis need food aid

Tens of thousands of Somalis have watched their land dry up after years without rain. Then the livestock died. Finally the food ran out.

Barbara Stocking: The cycle of disaster-aid-disaster-aid must be broken

All too familiar pictures of hunger in the Horn of Africa have returned to our screens as recurrent drought, soaring food prices, conflict, and entrenched poverty leave 12 million people across Ethiopia, Somalia and Kenya without enough food and water to live.

Trail of the unexpected: Paris' coffee culture

Parisian coffee was once a bitter black mark on French cuisine. No longer, says Tilly Culme-Seymour

Britain pledges £38m to help Ethiopia's starving

Britain has pledged to provide food for 1.3 million starving people in Ethiopia, as the country suffers its worst drought in a decade.

Active Travel: Wild at heart in Ethiopia

A trek into the soaring Simien mountains reveals rare sights and sounds for Kate Eshelby

Rivals sign deal to demilitarise Abyei region

North and South Sudan have signed an agreement to demilitarise the disputed Abyei region and allow in Ethiopian peacekeeping forces, former South African president Thabo Mbeki said yesterday.

Disputed Abyei area of central Sudan to be demilitarised

North and South Sudan have agreed in principle to demilitarise the disputed central Abyei region and allow the deployment of Ethiopian peacekeeping troops in the area.

Van Commenee hails Farah record

Mo Farah's European 10,000 metres record was yesterday described as "truly world class" by the UK's athletics chief Charles van Commenee.

Farah posts new European record

Mo Farah smashed the European 10,000 metres record in winning the Prefontaine Classic at the Eugene Diamond League meeting in Oregon.

On The Road: All life and death to be found in a maze of a market in Ethiopia

I knew I was lost when I found myself surrounded by dozens of newly-made coffins. They were piled against the walls: adult size, child size, baby size, all smelling of freshly sawn timber. Addis Ababa's merkato is a huge sprawling city-within-a-city; a market so vast that no one seems to be sure where it exactly begins or ends – and I had been wandering around it for hours.

Semenya eases to double triumph

Caster Semenya powered to an impressive double at the South African championships yesterday, winning the 800 metres and 1,500 metres in the build-up to defending her 800m title at the World Championships.

Crime, By Ferdinand von Schirach, trans. Carol Brown Janeway

Ferdinand von Schirach is a prominent defence counsel in Germany. From his hundreds of cases, he has fashioned this bizarre and unsettling collection of 11 stories about crimes and their consequences. Von Schirach accepts that his debut work of fiction has sturdy roots in real events. But he has covered his trail, in this German bestseller, so as to make the source materials untraceable. The author is also the grandson of Baldur von Schirach, the half-American Nazi Gauleiter of Vienna who denounced Hitler at Nuremberg and served out 20 years in Spandau.

The Timeline: Comic Relief

1985: Birth of a charity

Nature Studies by Michael McCarthy: The bird that offers a clue to mankind's destiny

Anyone contemplating the ravages which humans are going to effect on non-human species in the 21st century should turn their attention to a remote area of southern Ethiopia, and a small plain near the town of Negele. This is the home of a diminutive songbird which the vast majority of people in the world have never heard of and never will, but whose fate nevertheless may mark a milestone in our destruction of the planet.

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