World Tour – A dam in Ethiopia, and terror in England

MARY REICHARD, HOST: Coming up next on The World and Everything in It: World Tour with Africa reporter Onize Ohikere.

ONIZE OHIKERE, REPORTER: Ethiopia plans to fill dam reservoir—We start today here in Africa.

AUDIO: [Man speaking]

Ethiopia declared Friday that it would start filling the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam next month. That’s when the rainy season starts, bringing more water to the Nile River. Ethiopia’s goal is to become a major power exporter, boosting the economy and bringing its population out of poverty. But Egypt still opposes the project. Egypt depends on the Nile for 90 percent of its water and worries the dam would restrict that supply.

Tensions between the two countries have been rising ever since Ethiopia started work on the dam in 2011. Egypt says the countries should reach an agreement before filling the dam. But the countries remain locked in a political standoff.

Both Egypt and Ethiopia have hinted at military steps to protect their interests.

Tunisians protest unemployment—Next we head north to Tunisia.

AUDIO: [Sound of protests]

Protests in the southern part of the country turned violent over the weekend. Crowds blocked roads with burning tires and pelted security forces with stones. 

For weeks, demonstrators have demanded officials provide jobs in the oil and gas sector. At first they were peaceful, but then police arrested a lead spokesman for the protesters. In response, several demonstrators attacked a police station with Molotov cocktails. Police arrested 10 people and used tear gas to disperse the crowds.

Ever since the Arab Spring uprising in 2011, Tunisians have demanded greater work opportunities and a more robust economy. In 2017, hundreds of people staged a sit-in. The protest ended when the government pledged to invest almost $28 million dollars in the region. But Tunisians say the government has failed to fulfill that promise. About 30 percent of people in the area are unemployed. 

England stabbing—Next we head to Europe.

Three people died and three others were injured in a knife attack in England on Saturday. One eyewitness said the attacker walked into a park and began yelling.

AUDIO: And I saw a massive knife in his hand, probably five inches minimum. And then he turned and started looking towards us, and that’s when I started shouting run.

Police arrested the attacker, a 25 year old man from Libya. Officials say he was operating alone. They labeled the assault an act of terrorism.

The town held a minute of silence on Monday to honor the victims.

Solar eclipse—And finally, we end today in Asia. 

AUDIO: [Sound of crowd]

Crowds in Taiwan gathered to watch the solar eclipse Sunday. They peered through special telescopes and homemade pinhole boxes as the moon slowly inched in front of the sun. Its black disc covered almost all of the sun, but left a bright “ring of fire” around the rim.

AUDIO: [Girl speaking]

One student said she was excited to see the phenomenon, because it won’t be visible in Taiwan again for almost 200 years.

The ring of fire eclipse was visible in most of Asia and Africa. It also coincided with the longest day of the year, the summer solstice.

Reporting for WORLD, I’m Onize Ohikere in Abuja, Nigeria.

(AP Photo/Hassene Dridi) Tunisian Graduates unemployed protest in Tunis after Tunisian Prime Minister Elyes Fakhfakh announced that public service recruitments will be stopped and the possibility of reduce wages for public service employees, Wednesday June 17, 2020. 

WORLD Radio transcripts are created on a rush deadline. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Accuracy and availability may vary. The authoritative record of WORLD Radio programming is the audio record.

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