Equatorial Guinea

  1. Hospitals still stretched after Equatorial Guinea blasts

    Rhoda Odhiambo

    BBC Africa Health

    Drone footage shows damaged buildings after explosions in Bata, Equatorial Guinea
    Image caption: More than 1,000 people were left homeless after the blasts

    Ten days after a series of explosions left more than 100 people dead in Equatorial Guinea, hospitals are still overwhelmed by the number of people injured.

    Aid agencies offering help to the country say some of the affected by the blast have not been able to seek treatment earlier as they did not have a health cover.

    The Israeli Defence Forces, who are offering medical aid in Bata, told the BBC that even though the search and operations activities have been called off, a lot of bodies lay unclaimed in the morgues.

    Col Noam Fink, the chief medic of the mission, says some patients are still traumatised after the attack. Many are also trying to overcome their injuries at home.

    The government has now made access to healthcare free of charge to allow those with no financial means to come forward and receive care.

    This is the cause of the spike in cases in hospitals

    Many people are currently being housed in a temporary shelter organised by the UN, after the explosions left more than 1,000 people homeless.

    President Obiang Mbazogo has blamed the explosions on the recklessness of farmers who lit fires near the military barracks where an armoury caught fire.

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  2. E Guinea begins official mourning after deadly explosion

    Killian Ngala

    BBC News

    explosion site
    Image caption: Satellite images show the extent of the blast in Bata

    Equatorial Guinea has begun three days of national mourning after the deaths of at least 105 people following explosions at a munitions depot on Sunday.

    Flags in Equatorial Guinea will fly at half-mast for the next three days.

    The US has sent a team of experts to support the search and rescue operations and drugs and medical equipment from Spain are expected to arrive in the country on Wednesday.

    The vice-president, and son of the president, Teodoro Obiang says it will take at least 10 days to clear rubble as rescuers continue to search for people.

    More than 600 people are still in hospital and the death toll is expected to rise.

    President Obiang Nguema said the munitions depot had "caught fire due to neighbouring farmers clearing land by setting it alight, leading to the explosion".

    The president also blamed the "negligence" of the team responsible for guarding the stores of dynamite and explosives.

    He has ordered the government to conduct an investigation.

    But questions are being asked about why stockpiles of explosives were being stored in a populated area and Human Rights Watch has asked for an independent investigation.

    Read more: Satellite images show Equatorial Guinea destruction

  3. Equatorial Guinea blasts death toll rises to 105

    The death toll from explosions at a military base in Equatorial Guinea has risen to 105, the health ministry says.

    Some 133 people were still in hospital, the ministry said in a tweet.

    A total total of 615 people were injured in the blasts.

    View more on twitter

    The death toll rose after seven more corpses were discovered on Tuesday, the AFP news agency reports, quoting the state television.

    The blasts on Sunday hit the Nkoantoma military base in the country's main city, Bata, and caused huge damage to buildings and homes.

    President Obiang Nguema said they had been caused "by the negligence of a unit charged with the care and protection of stores of dynamite and explosives".

  4. Equatorial Guinea blasts: the problem with storing explosives

    Video content

    Video caption: Badly stored, colonial era ammunition stores are found in populated areas across the globe

    Badly stored, colonial era ammunition stores can be found in populated areas across the globe - often because cities have expanded around them

  5. More deaths after Equatorial Guinea blasts

    BBC World Service

    At least 31 people are now known to have been killed and more than 600 others injured in a series of explosions at a military camp in Equatorial Guinea on Sunday.

    State media said three young children had been rescued from the rubble of buildings which were flattened after the explosions.

    President Teodoro Obang Nguema has blamed the blasts in the city of Bata on stubble burning by farmers and negligence in the storage of explosives.

    The health ministry in the Central African country said hospitals had been overwhelmed.

  6. Equatorial Guinea appeals for international help after deadly explosions

    Video content

    Video caption: The president says the cause was 'negligence' at a military base in the city of Bata

    The president says the cause was 'negligence' around the storage of dynamite at a military base in the city of Bata.

  7. At least 20 killed in Equatorial Guinea blasts

    BBC World Service

    People carry a body in a sheet following explosions at a military base in Bata, Equatorial Guinea March.
    Image caption: Hospitals have been overwhelmed by the number of patients admitted

    At least 20 people are now known to have been killed and more than 600 others injured in a series of explosions at a military camp in Equatorial Guinea on Sunday.

    President Teodoro Obiang Nguema has blamed the blasts in the city of Bata on stubble burning by farmers and negligence in the storage of explosives.

    The blasts flattened homes and tore the roofs off buildings. Debris was strewn across a wide area.

    The health ministry in the oil rich Central African country said hospitals had been overwhelmed. It urged people to donate blood and asked off duty doctors to help.

  8. Equatorial Guinea appeals for help after huge blasts

    Will Ross

    Africa editor, BBC World Service

    People search through rubble following explosions at a military base in Bata, Equatorial Guinea
    Image caption: People looking for survivors in the rubble and lifting up debris from buildings

    Officials in Equatorial Guinea have appealed for international help following a series of explosions that left at least 15 people dead and 500 injured.

    The cause of the blasts has been put down to an accident at a military base.

    In a statement read out on national television, President Teodoro Obiang Nguema said the explosions had been caused by the negligence of the team in charge of storing dynamite inside the military base.

    That put an end to the hours of speculation over what exactly had happened.

    It’s not surprising that the health services were quickly overwhelmed – these were extremely powerful explosions that flattened homes and tore the roofs off buildings.

    Videos from the scene showed injured people staggering through clouds of smoke to reach safety.

    What’s not clear is how many people were trapped under the rubble.

  9. Video content

    Video caption: Aftermath of Equatorial Guinea explosions

    A series of explosions have rocked the main city of Bata, injuring hundreds and leaving many dead.

  10. Equatorial Guinea seeks US help in piracy fight

    BBC Monitoring

    The world through its media

    The Gulf of Guinea
    Image caption: The Gulf of Guinea is considered among the most dangerous in the world

    Equatorial Guinea has asked the US to help in the fight against piracy attacks.

    The request was made at a meeting between Foreign Affairs Minister Siméon Oyono Esono Angue and Anthony Jean Tata, the acting US under secretary of defence for policy.

    Mr Oyono Esono Angue stressed that maritime piracy was a key national security issue and explained the joint efforts being carried out by West Africa countries.

    The Guinean minister insisted on the need for training, information sharing and the provision of equipment to effectively curb the attacks.

    More than 80% of Equatorial Guinea's GDP depends on oil and gas resources originating in the Gulf of Guinea.

    The country's oil and gas infrastructures suffered at least four kidnappings in 2020, which could do enormous damage to the economy.

    According to the International Maritime Bureau (IMB), there has been a 40% increase in the number of reported kidnappings in the Gulf of Guinea in 2020 compared to 2019.

    IMB data on piracy activity in 2020 reports that 95% of global kidnappings took place there.

  11. Court rules Obiang mansion seizure was justified

    BBC World Service

    The International Court of Justice in The Hague has ruled that France had the right to seize a Paris mansion owned by the son of Equatorial Guinea's president, Teodorin Obiang, following his 2017 conviction for money laundering.

    Equatorial Guinea had argued that the building was subject to diplomatic immunity.

    Despite riches in oil and gas, 76% of Equatorial Guinea's 1.5 million population live in poverty, according to the UN and World Bank.

    President Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo has ruled the country for 41 years.

    His son, who is also the country's vice-president, recently made headlines for sharing drone footage of his lavish holidaying on Instagram. Investigative journalist Emmanuel Freudenthal tweeted that Mr Obiang had been staying in a hotel on a private island in the Maldives at a cost of $50,000 (£38,000) per night.

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  12. Equatorial Guinea VP flaunts island holiday on Instagram

    Teodorin Nguema Obiang, the vice-president of Equatorial Guinea and son of the president, has been holidaying on an idyllic island and sharing videos and pictures on Instagram.

    His latest video, shot by a drone, captures him walking on a deserted sandy beach then segues to another sequence of him snorkelling and diving in pristine turquoise waters.

    The video ends with an overhead shot revealing the full breadth of the tiny island and a yacht anchored close by.

    View more on instagram

    Investigate journalist Emmanuel Freudenthal tweeted that Mr Obiang has been holidyaing in the Maldives since the beginning October.

    He is staying at a $50,000 (£38,000) per night hotel at a private island, Mr Freudenthal tweeted.

    In 2017 The Economist magazine reported on Mr Obiang's lifestyle in a report titled Instagram playboy is also the vice-president of Equatorial Guinea.

    It featured pictures of the vice-president showing off his expensive cars and mansions.

    His assets - including luxury vehicles, mansions and expensive watches - have been seized in three continents over the past decade, Bloomberg reports.

    In 2017, a French court handed him a three-year suspended jail term for corruption.

    Despite riches in oil and gas, 76% of Equatorial Guinea's 1.5 million population live in poverty, according to the UN and World bank.

    President Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo has ruled the country for 41 years.

  13. Turkey opens embassy in Equatorial Guinea

    Turkey has opened its first embassy in Equatorial Guinea’s capital Malabo.

    The Turkish foreign minister on Wednesday officially opened the embassy and said Equatorial Guinea was a "strategic partner".

    Mevlut Cavusoglu said that he was pleased to be the first Turkish foreign minister to officially visit the country.

    "Especially with the friendship between President Teodoro Obiang Nguema Mbasogo and our President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, our relations have progressed and developed rapidly in the last three, four years," he said.

    The minister tweeted highlights of the visit:

    View more on twitter

    Equatorial Guinea country profile