World Tour – Protests in Belarus, and a missionary murder in Haiti

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

ONIZE OHIKERE, REPORTER: Mozambique ISIS attack—We start today here in Africa.


Islamic fighters occupied a key port in Mozambique last week. The town on the eastern coast of Africa fell to extremist fighters after repeated attacks.

A local armed-conflict analyst says it’s the largest group of insurgents she’s ever seen in the area. But she doesn’t think the group can hold the port town for long.

AUDIO: But that is not their goal. Their goal has been achieved: it’s been a massive victory for ISCAP—Islamic State Central African Province – propaganda, and the insurgents have shown what they are capable of.

The port is a major traffic hub and houses a massive natural gas facility. Natural gas is one of Africa’s biggest investment projects.

Mauritius oil tanker splits in two—Next, we head further east, just off the African coast.


The oil tanker stranded near Mauritius split in two on Saturday. The fractured ship ran aground at the end of July. Pounding waves began to crack it apart, sending oil spilling into the Indian Ocean. Crews worked around the clock to pump oil out of the ship and keep it from polluting the turquoise waters, but more than 1,000 tons of oil still escaped.

Now that the ship has split, a salvage team plans to pull the front half out to sea, to avoid further damaging the Mauritian coastline. The back half of the ship is still stuck on the reef.

Belarus election protests—Next, we go to Europe.


Hundreds of factory workers in Belarus confronted president Alexander Lukashenko on Monday as he tried to give a speech. The country held elections on August 9th, and Lukashenko claims to have won 80 percent of the vote.

But protesters accuse him of rigging the election. More than 100,000 people marched through the capital on Sunday, demanding he step down.

Lukashenko has held power for 26 years. And so far, he’s resisted calls for fresh elections. During a recent speech, he told protesters, “Until you kill me, there will be no elections.”

Haitian missionary killed—Next, we go to the Caribbean.

A Presbyterian missionary to Haiti was shot and killed in his car earlier this month. Unidentified attackers on a motorcycle shot pastor and church planter Jean Paul after he stopped at a bank in Haiti’s capital. He died on the way to the hospital.

The attackers’ motive remains unclear. Muggers in Haiti often target people leaving banks. But Paul also faced opposition from local voodoo priests.

Paul began his work in Haiti in 2002. He founded an orphanage, a medical clinic, a Bible college, and a network of churches.

Thailand protests target monarchy—And finally, we end today in Asia.


A pro-democracy protest in Thailand drew more than 10,000 people on Sunday. It was the largest political demonstration the nation has seen in years.

Student-led groups have held near-daily protests over the past month, denouncing the monarchy and its military-based administration. Many are using Western pop culture references to build their campaign. At Sunday’s rally, student leaders stood on the stage and held up a salute popularized by the Hunger Games book series. They also called the king, “He Who Must Not Be Named,” a reference to the villain in Harry Potter. And they read a 10-point manifesto challenging the king’s power and wealth.

That’s this week’s World Tour. Reporting for WORLD, I’m Onize Ohikere in Abuja, Nigeria.

(AP Photo/Dmitri Lovetsky) Belarusian opposition supporters light phones lights during a protest rally in front of the government building at Independent Square in Minsk, Belarus, Tuesday, Aug. 18, 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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