Kofi Annan

Assad tanks punish protesters after UN team drives out

As the UN team drove out of the Damascus suburb of Douma yesterday, regime tanks were said to have rolled in – offering another indication that President Bashar al-Assad is adopting a strategy of brutal mass punishment for those who turn out to show observers their discontent with the regime.

Shattered streets of Homs belie Assad's promises of peace

As President Bashar al-Assad's promise that he will abide by a ceasefire was met with scepticism yesterday, evidence emerged of the utter devastation wrought by his forces during the fierce bombardment of opposition forces in the central city of Homs.

Assad agrees to UN peace plan – but attacks spill into Lebanese

Fears of the conflict in Syria spilling over into neighbouring countries were heightened yesterday as residents of a border village said President Bashar al-Assad's troops had crossed into Lebanon, destroying farm buildings and clashing with rebel fighters.

The Big Question: What's gone wrong in Kenya, and is the peace deal

Kenya's President, Mwai Kibaki, and Prime Minister, Raila Odinga, have had a very public falling out over the latter's attempt to suspend two cabinet ministers suspected of involvement in serious corruption. The duelling partners in Kenya's peculiar power-sharing government have been squabbling nearly constantly since their shotgun marriage in early 2008. The newspapers in Nairobi chart the daily theatre of scandals, arguments and reconciliations in the bloated unity government.

The Big Question: Who are the Elders, and can they do anything to

The political and humanitarian crisis in Zimbabwe has dropped off the news agenda in recent months, as events there have stagnated and reverted to the deeply depressing status quo. In an attempt to change that, a group of influential world leaders who have now left their public offices arranged a visit.

The man who heals deadly Kurdish feuds

Ibrahim Tekin's problems began when a friend lent him his wife's three gold bracelets to shore up his failing restaurant business. Two days later, the wife's family told him to hand them back: the bracelets were part of a dowry. Mr Tekin could not. He had pawned them. In the ensuing brawl, he stabbed one of his assailants in the heart.

Kenya rivals sign power-sharing deal

Kenyan President Mwai Kibaki and opposition leader Raila Odinga signed a power-sharing agreement today intended to end a post-election crisis that left 1,000 people dead.

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