Sierra Leone
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S.Leone Cholera Outbreak to Worsen As Rainy Season Peaks

Gripped by its worst cholera outbreak in nearly 15 years, which has already left 229 dead, Sierra Leone is likely to see cases triple in the next month as the rainy season hits its peak, estimates show.

In Freetown, the densely populated seaside capital, makeshift houses without toilets or running water crowd the muddy green hills surrounding the city. Slums cluster on the seafront, where rubbish chokes streams and children play in dirty water.

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Sierra Leone Cholera Spreads, Death Toll Hits 220

Sierra Leone's health ministry said Thursday that deaths from a cholera outbreak had reached 220, affecting over 12,000 people in the West African nation, which is struggling to curb the disease.

"Some 12,140 people are affected nationwide in 10 of 12 districts," the health ministry's director of disease prevention and control, Amara Jambai, told journalists, saying the figure included cases recorded up to Wednesday.

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S.Leone Cholera Outbreak Kills 62 in Less Than a Month

Sierra Leone's health ministry on Wednesday said an outbreak of cholera in the West African country has killed 62 people in less than a month.

The western area, including the capital Freetown, and "three towns in the northern and southern parts of the country have now been declared cholera outbreak areas", said a ministry statement.

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WTO Funds $3mn Project to Boost Tourism in S.Leone

Sierra Leone on Friday launched a $3 million (2.5 million euro) project funded by the World Trade Organization (WTO) to help develop its tourism sector, officials said.

The head of the National Tourism Board, Cecil Williams said: "The fund will be used to formulate an eco-tourism policy and action plan for Sierra Leone and review the Development of Tourism Act."

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War Crimes Court Hands Liberia's Taylor 50-Year Jail Term

A UN-backed war crimes court sentenced Liberia's former president Charles Taylor to 50 years in jail for arming Sierra Leone rebels in return for "blood diamonds".

"The trial chamber unanimously sentences you to a single term of imprisonment for 50 years on all counts," said Special Court for Sierra Leone Judge Richard Lussick at the court based just outside The Hague.

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Lawyers to Argue Charles Taylor Sentencing

Sierra Leone's U.N.-backed war crimes court will hear arguments Wednesday on the sentencing of Liberian warlord Charles Taylor, who has been convicted of war crimes and crimes against humanity.

Prosecutors before the Special Court for Sierra Leone are to say why they think Taylor, 64, should receive an 80-year term in a British jail, while his defense, which claims that his conviction was "bought," will argue in mitigation.

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Report: Lebanon Informs Syrian Authorities about Lutfallah ll Investigations

Authorities are tracking down a Lebanese man who is allegedly playing a critical role in smuggling arms to the Syria opposition, al-Akhbar newspaper reported on Thursday.

According to the daily, the Lebanese authorities informed the Syrian authorities about the preliminary investigations regarding the Lebanese navy’s interception of weapons aboard the Sierra Leone-flagged Lutfallah II ship.

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20 Dead in Sierra Leone Road Accident

Twenty people travelling on the back of a truck died in a road accident in eastern Sierra Leone when the vehicle careered off the road and plunged into a ditch, police said Saturday.

"Eighteen of the passengers were killed on the spot while the others died later in a nearby rural clinic," police spokesman Superintendent Ibrahim Samura told AFP.

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