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  1. Zulu king appeals for end to xenophobic attacks
  2. Efforts to rescue migrant boats in Mediterranean
  3. Ethiopia mourns IS beheadings
  4. Deadly attack on UN bus in Somalia

Live Reporting

By Hugo Williams and Farouk Chothia

All times stated are UK

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Goodnight - we'll be back tomorrow

That concludes our Africa Live coverage for today. Download the

Africa Today podcast and visit for the latest news on the continent. And we leave you with this photo of Ethiopia's Lelisa Desisa celebrating victory in the Boston Marathon:

Lelisa Desisa of Ethiopia celebrates after winning the running of the 119th Boston Marathon on 20 April 2015 in Boston, Massachusetts

First-time voters

With the UK general election due to be held on 7 May, BBC Focus on Africa's Tony Andoh-Korsah is in Scotland to meet first-time voters. Tomiwa Folorunso was born in Scotland, and has Nigerian roots. She says she feels proud to be Scottish, but that none of the political parties are really representing her.

first time voter

And a reminder that BBC Focus on Africa radio and TV will be reporting from different parts of the UK over the next week to find out how voters with an African background feel about the upcoming elections.

Everyone's talking about #Xenophobia

Social media in southern Africa and parts of West Africa continue to be dominated by the issue of xenophobic attacks in South Africa. The hashtag

#NoToXenophobia is also very popular, as people show their solidarity with victims of the violence. Earlier, Zulu King Goodwill Zwelithini described the anti-immigrant attacks as "vile" . Last month, the king reportedly said that foreigners should "pack their belongings and go home". He insists that his comments were distorted by the media.

a map showing twitter trends in africa with xenophobia very prevalent

Kwame Onyina shares his view on the

BBC Africa Facebook page:

"The King himself is just as confused as his subjects. Their predicament could be traced back to the failure of Mandela, Mbeki and Zuma to implement the black empowerment charter."

Kenyan wins environmental prize

Portrait of Phyllis Omido
Goldman Environmental Prize
Phyllis Omido will use the prize money to continue her environmental campaigning

Kenyan environmental activist Phyllis Omido has

won the prestigious Goldman prize.

She is being recognised for her campaign against a battery smelting plant accused of damaging the health of a community in the city of Mombasa.

Migrants in the Mediterranean: Your views

We have been getting lots of reaction on the

BBC Africa Facebook to the sinking of migrant boats in the Mediterranean. Here are a sample of your views:

Fatimatu Abubakar says: "Most African governments are corrupt. They ignore the suffering of the masses. The youth are frustrated so they would rather die than go hungry. But is it worth it?"

Herbert Na-GodWin Ekedigwe adds: "They should allow Africans to enter Europe freely because they entered Africa freely years back."

Kijambu John Baptist says: "African governments are responsible because it's they have failed to create employment for their citizens and have also failed to promote stability and peace in Africa."

Coming up on Focus

David Amanor is in the hot seat on BBC Focus on Africa radio at 17:00 and 19:00 GMT. Tune in for an interview with a Gambian who made the perilous journey across the Mediterranean.

African winners at Boston Marathon

There were African winners in both the men's and the women's race at the Boston Marathon today. Lelisa Desisa of Ethiopia claimed his second victory, having also won the race in 2013, when the event was marred by a bomb attack at the finish line. Kenya's Caroline Rotich won the women's after coming fourth in 2011.

Suicide blast at Nigeria school

One person has been killed and six others wounded in a suicide attack on a school in north-eastern Nigeria's Potiskum town, reports the BBC's Haruna Tangaza from the capital, Abuja.

The attacker detonated the explosives at the school for Shia Muslims, he adds.

Mixed reaction to king's call

Pumza Fihlani

BBC News, Johannesburg

The Zulu king addressed thousands who went to a stadium in Durban to hear him speak

Public reaction has been mixed to Zulu King Goodwill Zwelithini's call for an end to xenophobic attacks at a meeting of his subjects in South Africa's coastal city of Durban.

Some say this was a bold move for a monarch who has been insulted on social media and has faced a backlash in newspapers for allegedly fuelling xenophobia.

Others say one speech will not undo the damage caused to South Africa's reputation in the rest of Africa, and accuse the king of failing to take responsibility for controversial remarks attributed to him last month.

Kenya condemns IS murders

Kenya has joined the international condemnation of the

killing of more than 20 Ethiopian nationals by Islamic State militants in Libya.

The killings showed how "senseless and inhumane" the militants were, Foreign Minister Amina Mohamed said in a statement.

'Extinct' monkey photographed

Bouvier's red colobus monkey photographed in the Congo
Lieven Devreese/ Gaël Elie

Two primatologists working in the forests of Congo-Brazzville have returned from the field with the first ever photograph of Bouvier's red colobus monkey. It's a rare primate not seen since the 1970s, and which was feared to be extinct. Lieven Devreese is one of the primatologists who managed to track the monkey down.

She's been speaking to BBC Newsday's Tom Hagler:

Designer of Ghana flag dies

Sammy Darko

BBC Africa, Accra

The woman who designed Ghana's national flag, Theodosia Okoh, has died at the age of 92. She was also the first woman to lead the Ghana Hockey Association.

Theodosia Okoh
Ghana Government

Ms Okoh last appeared in public two years ago when she expressed her displeasure with the mayor of the capital, Accra, for trying to change the name of a hockey pitch named after her to that of the late President John Evans Atta Mills.

Africans dominate Boston Marathon

The runners are off at this year's Boston Marathon amid tight security, two years after a bomb attack killed three people and wounded more than 260 others at the finish line in 2013.

Ethiopians are currently dominating the men's race after 19km (12 miles), with Tadese Tola at the head of the pack. In the women's race, USA's Desiree Linden leads Ethiopia's Mare Dibaba and Kenya's Caroline Kilel after 19km. Watch the live stream


Rita Jeptoo of of Kenya (L) winner of the women's division and Lelisa Desisa Benti of Ethiopia, winner of the men's division, hold a trophy during post race activities of the 117th Boston Marathon on April 15, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts
Jim Rogash/Getty Images
Rita Jeptoo of of Kenya (L) and Lelisa Desisa (R) of Ethiopia were winners of the men's and women's races at the Boston Marathon in 2013

Two rescues underway

Rescue operations are underway in the Mediterranean after two boats carrying migrants issued distress calls, according to Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi. One of the vessels has 100-150 people on board, the other 300.

Nothing 'too sporty'

Rana Jawad

BBC News, Tunis

Dozens of taxis in Tunis are on strike in front of the ministry of tourism on Mohamed V avenue. I'm told that they are unhappy about new regulations which mean drivers are fined if they are caught wearing flip-flops, jeans or "any clothing that is too sporty" while behind the wheel.

tunix taxi drivers on strike

Sicily migrants

The BBC's Efrem Gebreab has sent this picture from the Italian island of Sicily, where 27 survivors from what could be

the worst ever migrant boat disaster are due to arrive.

Abdourahman, seated on the left, is an 18-year-old from The Gambia. He has dreams of becoming a footballer or a businessman. He paid the equivalent of $1,800 (£1,200) to get to Italy. His 21-year-old friend Sateh is also Gambian.

two gambian migrants photographed in Sicily

The two are staying at the Don Bosco hotel near Syracuse, which the owner has converted into a reception centre for migrants.

front of the Don Bosco hotel near Syracuse

Smugglers cashing in on migrants' misery

Infographic saying that people smugglers make $1 million from each migrant boat
Getty Images

Ethiopia mourns beheadings

Anne Soy

BBC News, Nairobi

Ethiopia's government has declared three days of mourning following the beheading of more than 20 of its nationals in Libya by the Islamic State (IS).

The government has described the killings as an "atrocious massacre".

An image grab taken on 19 April 19 2015 from a video reportedly released by the Islamic State (IS) group of fighters in Libya
The militants have carried out a spate of attacks in Libya

Many Ethiopians have also taken to social media to express their shock, anger and grief.

Photos from king's rally

Photos have been coming in from Zulu King Goodwill Zwelithini's rally in Durban, where he called for an end to xenophobic violence:

Men at Zulu king's rally in Durban on 20 April 2015

He told his subjects that "every single foreigner must feel secure" in South Africa, and those involved in the violence should face the law.

Zulu king's men in Durban on 20 April 2015

King's speech ends

Zulu King Goodwill has ended his address to his subjects in South Africa's coastal city of Durban with the words: "God bless Africa."

It was the monarch's first imbizo, or gathering of his people, since he was accused of fuelling xenophobia at a meeting last month.

A child plays at a temporary refugee camp for foreign nationals fleeing attacks from South Africans, east of Johannesburg, 20 April 2015
Families are taking refuge in camps

While appealing for calm, he blamed the media for distorting his comments and said the South African Human Rights Commission should be given a chance to investigate hate speech charges brought against him without hindrance.

He also called on the government to address the underlying issues which led to the attacks that killed at least seven people and left some 5,000 homeless.

Zulus 'not criminals'


The BBC's Nomsa Maseko

tweets from South Africa that Zulu King Goodwill Zwelithini has told his subjects to show restraint, following the xenophobic violence that he was blamed for fuelling.

"There are many insults aimed at me, but as your king, I order you to calm down. The Zulus can't be seen as criminals," she quotes him as telling his subjects at a rally.

King denies xenophobia


The BBC's Nomsa Maseko

tweets from South Africa that King Goddwill Zwelithini has denied fuelling the xenophobic violence that has hit the country, at an imbizo, or traditonal gathering, in Durban.

"If it is true that I said people must take up arms, the whole country would be in ashes by now," she quotes him as saying in the Zulu language.

King speaks

Zulu King Goodwill Zwelithini is addressing his subjects in Durban after he was accused of fuelling the xenophobic violence that has killed at least seven people in South Africa in recent weeks. You can watch a live stream of his speech

here (in Zulu).

BreakingBreaking News

A boat with 300 migrants is sinking in the Mediterranean, with 20 reported dead, a migration agency says.

Buthelezi 'jeered'


South African journalist Viasen Soobramoney

tweets that Zulu chief Mangosuthu Buthelezi faced "loud booing" when he told a rally in Durban that foreigners were welcome in South Africa. The king is due to address the rally shortly.

'Africans welcome'

South Africa's Zulu chief Mangosuthu Buthelezi has said that people from other African states are welcome in the country. He denied that Zulu King Goodwill Zawelithini had fuelled xenophobic violence in South Africa. Chief Buthelezi, the leader of the opposition Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP), is speaking at a rally called by the king. You can watch a

live stream of the rally here.

'Jeers for African diplomats'


South African journalist Govan Whittles

tweets that African diplomats were jeered at the rally Zulu King Goodwill Zwelithini has called to tackle xenophobia, and there were boos when Jewish and Muslim clerics recited prayers.

Xenophobic attack captured on camera

Warning - readers may find the images below disturbing

Mozambican trader Emmanuel Sithole was beaten and stabbed to death in Johannesburg on Saturday in broad daylight. Photojournalist James Oatway captured the entire attack on camera. His photographs have become some of the defining images of the recent wave of xenophobic attacks in South Africa.

He's been speaking to the BBC's Karen Allen about how the attack unfolded:

"One man got Emmanuel down on the ground and started beating him with a monkey wrench," he said.

Emmanuel Sithole lies on the ground while he's attacked by a group of men
Reuters/James Oatway/Sunday Times

"I think I distracted the attackers for a short while, because they ran away. But then a guy with a knife came and he started stabbing at Emmanuel."

The attack took place in the Alexandra township in Johannesburg. South African police have arrested three men in connection with the murder.

After lying injured in the street, Oatway and a group of locals managed to get Sithole to hospital, but he later died from his injuries.

Reuters/James Oatway/Sunday Times

"I am sad that he didn't pull through. I really wish we could have saved him... I'm traumatised, I'm dazed, confused, but mainly I'm angry with my countrymen," said Oatway.

#emmanuelsithole has been trending on twitter in South Africa, as people react with shock at the attack.

Photo from Garowe

Photos are coming in of the bomb attack on a UN bus in Somalia's Puntland region. At least seven people were killed when a huge explosion ripped through the bus in Garowe town:

UN vehicle destroyed after al shabab bomb attack

'Foreigners must go'


A man gestures at a rally in Durban (20 April 2015)

The BBC's Kelvin Brown

tweets from the Zulu monarch's imbizo, or traditional gathering, in Durban: "The pic sums up the anti-foreigner sentiment we are seeing at today's #Imbizo. The man gestures foreigners must go."

Al-Shabab's mountain hideouts

Mary Harper

BBC News

Al-Shabab has become increasingly active in Somalia's semi-autonomous region of Puntland, targeting government and military officials.

An offensive launched last year by African Union and Somali government troops in southern Somalia has pushed al-Shabab fighters north into Puntland. They have hideouts in impenetrable mountains, from which they launch their attacks.

Somali soldiers patrol the streets of Mogadishu on February 22, 2014
Somali and AU troops have been regaining territory in the south

'Johannesburg is ours'

Audrey Brown

BBC Africa, Durban

A group gathered at the Moses Mabhida stadium in South Africa's coastal city of Durban ahead of the Zulu monarch's address on the xenophobic violence are singing: "Johannesburg is ours, Durban is ours. So why the fight?"

The song also calls on all foreigners who want to leave the country to do so.

"We will continue working," it adds.

King meets chiefs

South Africa's Zulu King Goodwill Zwelithini is holding a "special meeting" with his chiefs before he addresses a rally in the coastal city of Durban on the xenophobic violence that has hit parts of the country, the KwaZulu-Natal provincial government has


Zulu King Goodwill Zwelithini (24 September 2008)
The monarch is expected to call for an end to attacks on foreigners

Suicide bomber blamed for attack

A senior police officer in Somalia says a suicide bomber is believed to have carried out the attack on a UN bus in north-eastern Garowe town in the semi-autonomous region of Puntland.

Ahmed Abdullahi Samatar said seven people had been killed - four foreigners, two Somalis and the suspected bomber.

Seven other people had been injured in the attack, he said.

King's regiments gather

Zulu regiments have been streaming into a stadium in South Africa's city of Durban ahead of an address by King Goodwill Zwelithini on the xenophobic violence that has swept parts of the country.

The Zulu monarch is expected to call for restraint after being accused of fuelling the violence - a charge he denies.

Zulus form the biggest ethnic group in South Africa

Humanitarian workers killed

The UN children agency says four of its staff members were among those killed in al-Shabab's attack on a bus in Somalia's north-western Garowe town.

'Iron hand'

A senior police official in Somalia's Puntland region has vowed to respond with an "iron hand" to al-Shabab's bombing of a UN bus in Garowe town.

"It's a dark day, but terrorists must know that the blood they shed will not go in vain," Abdullahi Mohamed told AFP news agency.

Al-Shabab said it targeted the UN because it was a "colonisation force" in Somalia.

Al-Shabab bombed UN bus

Somalia's militant Islamist group al-Shabab says it bombed a UN bus in north-western Somalia, killing at least 10 people, including foreigners.

UN condemns Somalia attacks


UN Somalia envoy Nicholas Kay has been

tweeting about the bomb which targeted a UN bus in Garowe town in north-eastern Somalia, killing at least 10 people: "I condemn attack this morning on @UN in #Garowe. Shocked and appalled by loss of life. More details to follow. @UNSomalia #Somalia"


African proverb is: You may tell a little lie that seems as small as a thorn, but it will grow to the size of a spear and kill you. A Yoruba proverb sent by Akudrabo Geoffrey, Arua, Uganda