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French Woman Kidnapped by Somalis in Kenya Resort Island

Gunmen who snatched a disabled 66-year-old Frenchwoman from her beachfront home in a prized Kenyan resort have taken her to neighboring war-torn Somalia, officials said Sunday.

With Kenyan forces obliged to stop their pursuit at the border and officials suspecting Somalia's al-Qaida-inspired Shebab, chances dimmed of a quick release for the woman, named as Marie Dedieu.

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At Least 120 Dead in Kenyan Pipeline Blast

At least 120 people were burned to death on Monday when a pipeline burst into flames in a Nairobi slum as local people were siphoning fuel from it, and more than 100 were injured, officials said.

Scores of bodies, some burned to the bone, lay on charred grass near trenches and a filthy river in the Sinai slum following the accident.

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World Bank Pledges $500 Million for Drought-stricken Horn of Africa

The World Bank on Monday pledged more than $500 million (348 million euros) to aid the drought-stricken Horn of Africa region, as United Nations aid chiefs met in Rome to discuss ramping up relief efforts.

The bulk of the money will go towards long-term projects to aid livestock farmers while $12 million will be for immediate assistance to those worst hit by the crisis and facing starvation, the World Bank said in a statement.

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FAO Appeals for Aid for 12 Million People in Horn of Africa

Twelve million people in the drought-hit Horn of Africa region need emergency aid, the U.N. food agency said on Wednesday, appealing for $120 million to help desperate farmers.

"Around 12 million people in the Horn of Africa are currently in need of emergency assistance," the Food and Agriculture Organization said in a statement, adding that hundreds of people are dying every day in the crisis.

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UNICEF Warns Horn of Africa Drought to ‘Worsen’

The plight of millions of people left hungry by a harsh drought across the Horn of Africa is set to worsen, with the rains not expected soon and harvests months away, a top U.N. official warned Saturday.

Scanty or failed rainfall in the region over the past two years has already forced thousands of Somalis to flee their country and ruined the livelihoods of millions in parts of Kenya, Ethiopia and Djibouti.

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Kenya's Extreme Winemaking High Above The Equator

The mist lifts from the mountains of Kenya's fabled Rift Valley, better known for its flamingoes and zebras than its wine, as women weave in and out with baskets of grapes on their heads.

It is grape picking time at Kenya's only commercial vineyard.

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Kenya: Camel's Milk Set for Boom Times

For the tattered-clothed young men in this remote community, milking a camel's stubby utters at sunrise is not a novelty, but a daily chore to get milk valued by their tribe for generations.

But camel's milk, long-cherished by the Cushite people of central Kenya, is now enjoying a renaissance in the capital Nairobi and could, some say, become an internationally coveted health food product worth 10 billion dollars a year. "Camels are better than cows because they can survive when there is drought, but the cows cannot, so I can make a profit even during dry season," said Halima Hussein, 45, whose 84-strong flock makes her a local camel-mogul.

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Ancient Wheat Plague Threatens World Crops Anew

Diseases that ravage wheat fields are as old as time itself. The ancient Romans even had a legend to explain the terrible plagues.

According to the myth, a mischievous young boy tied a flaming wheat straw to a fox's tail, torturing the animal. This single act angered the Roman god Robigus so much that he unleashed a rust-colored plague on the fields that turned all the crops to black.

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Security Tightened for Obama's Kenyan Family

Kenya has tightened security around the home of U.S. President Barack Obama's step-grandmother after the killing of Osama bin Laden, an official said Thursday.

"In the wake of security challenges including terror threats, I can confirm that we decided to enhance security at the home of Mama Sarah ...," said regional administrator Francis Mutie, using the popular name for Obama's step-grandmother who lives in western Kenya.

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Ethiopian Gunmen Kill 38 at Kenya Border

At least 38 people were killed when Ethiopian armed men attacked a rival community in a remote border region of north Kenya, a local official said Wednesday, warning the toll could rise.

"Where the incident occurred is very remote and mostly not accessible," Rift Valley Provincial Commissioner Osman Warfa told Agence France Presse in an update on Tuesday's attack.

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