On the Occasion of the Republic of Zimbabwe’s National Day

WASHINGTON, April 17, 2014/African Press Organization (APO)/ — Press Statement

John Kerry

Secretary of State

Washington, DC

April 17, 2014

On behalf of President Obama and the American people, I send best wishes to the people of Zimbabwe as you celebrate 34 years of independence on April 18.

The United States remains committed to the people of Zimbabwe. We will continue to support all Zimbabweans as you seek a more democratic, prosperous, and healthy future.

We look forward to strengthening our partnership with the Zimbabwean people to achieve our common goals of peace, security, and prosperity.

Source: APO

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AU PSC, at its 429th meeting held on 16 April 2014, adopted a decision on the situation in Guinea Bissau

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia, April 17, 2014/African Press Organization (APO)/ — The Peace and Security Council of the African Union (AU), at its 429th meeting held on 16 April 2014, adopted the following decision on the situation in Guinea Bissau:

Council,

1. Takes note of the briefing provided by the Director for Political Affairs of the AU Commission on the post-election situation in Guinea Bissau. Council also takes note of the statement made ??by the Representative of Ghana, in its capacity as the Chair of Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS);

2. Recalls its previous communiqués and press statements on the situation in Guinea Bissau, in particular communiqués PSC/AHG/BR/1(CCCXCVII), adopted at its 397th meeting, held at the level of Heads of State and Government, in New York, on 23 September 2013, and PSC/PR/COMM.1(CDVIII) of 13 December 2013;

3. Expresses its deep appreciation to the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), notably Nigeria and the ECOWAS Commission for developing an elaborate package of assistance to the Electoral Management Bodies (EBMs) in Guinea Bissau, in particular, the Technical Support Agency for the Management of the Electoral Process (GTAPE) which greatly facilitated the successful holding of Presidential and Legislative elections in Guinea Bissau on 13 April 2014. Council welcomes the peaceful atmosphere in which the elections took place in a free, fair and transparent manner;

4. Further expresses its appreciation to the AU Commission and the AU Election Observation Mission (AUEOM), which was led by former President Joaquim Chissano of Mozambique, for its support to Guinea Bissau and its people, which has significantly contributed towards the completion of the transition. Also expresses its appreciation to the international partners for providing support to the election process in Guinea Bissau and appeals to them to continue to support Guinea Bissau to emerge from the crisis;

5. Commends the political parties, independent candidates and the people of Guinea Bissau for signing a consensual code of conduct and abiding by its provisions to allow the electoral process to take place in a calm and peaceful environment throughout the electioneering campaigns;

6. Welcomes the progress made in Guinea Bissau’s transitional process, a country with a long history of unconstitutional changes of government which have greatly weakened the country’s democratic institutions. Council acknowledges that the general elections of 13 April 2014 mark a significant step towards the full restoration of constitutional order in Guinea Bissau;

7. Calls on political parties, independent candidates and the people of Guinea Bissau to continue to remain calm and to allow the electoral process to be completed in accordance with the Constitution of Guinea Bissau. Council warns all potential spoilers not to undermine the ongoing electoral process in the country and stresses that spoilers of the process will be held accountable for their actions;

8. Decides, in the light of the successful holding of Presidential and Legislative elections in Guinea Bissau on 13 April 2014, that upon announcement of the presidential winner and assumption of office by the new President in accordance with the Constitution of Guinea Bissau, the country will be invited to resume its participation in the AU’s activities in line with paragraph 6 of communiqué PSC/PR/COMM(CCCXVIII) adopted by the PSC at its 318th meeting of 17 April 2012;

9. Decides to remain actively seized of the matter.

Source: APO

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AU PSC, at its 429th meeting, held on 16 April 2014, was briefed on the upcoming elections in Egypt

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia, April 17, 2014/African Press Organization (APO)/ — The Peace and Security Council of the African Union (AU), at its 429th meeting, held on 16 April 2014, was briefed on the upcoming elections in Egypt by the Department of the Political Affairs of the AU Commission.

Council took note of the briefing. Council recalled all its legal instruments on unconstitutional changes of government, as well as its communiqué PSC/AHG/COMM.3(CDXVI) on the situation in Egypt, adopted at its 416th meeting held on 29 January 2014, and agreed to review the overall situation in Egypt following the presentation of the report to be submitted by the AU High-Level Panel for Egypt.

Council further encouraged the Department of Political Affairs to continue its engagement in support of democratization efforts in Africa.

Council agreed to remain seized of the matter.

Source: APO

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Orange celebrates the 10 millionth Orange Money customer

DAKAR, Sénégal, April 17, 2014/African Press Organization (APO)/ — Stéphane Richard, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Orange (http://www.orange.com), gave a bonus to the 10 millionth customer of Orange Money in Dakar, Senegal: Ms Kanny G., who had gone to an Orange Money outlet to open an account, was surprised to learn that she had won a smartphone with an Orange Money credit of 100,000 FCFA (152 euros).

Logo : http://www.photos.apo-opa.com/plog-content/images/apo/logos/orange-logo.jpg

Photo: http://www.photos.apo-opa.com/index.php?level=picture&id=999 (Stéphane Richard (on the right), Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Orange, gave a bonus to the 10 millionth customer of Orange Money in Dakar, Senegal)

“Orange Money is a revolution in terms of customer experience, and the appeal of this service is the best proof that we made the right choice when we decided to offer mobile payment services in 2008. I am very proud to be in Dakar today to meet our 10 millionth Orange Money customer. While making a strong contribution to economic and social development, mobile financial services also represent a major growth engine in Africa and the Middle East as well as in Europe for Orange,” said Stéphane Richard.

Orange Money has seen exponential growth since it was launched. The service is now available in 13 countries: Botswana, Cameroon, Côte d’Ivoire, Egypt (under the name Mobicash), Guinea, Jordan, Kenya, Madagascar, Mali, Mauritius, Niger, Senegal and Uganda. In 2013, more than 2.2 billion euros in transactions were conducted through Orange Money. The ten million mark has just been hit, and in some countries, such as Côte d’Ivoire, more than 40% of all Orange customers have an Orange Money account.

The success of the Orange Money service is closely linked to that fact that it meets strong expectations by people in Africa and the Middle East. It adapts to lifestyles in countries where only a minority of inhabitants have bank accounts yet the majority have a mobile phone. It makes life easier for users every day by giving them a way to keep their money safe or by saving time on all of their transactions.

Subscription to Orange Money is free of charge. After opening their accounts, customers have access to three types of services:

- money transfers, allowing them to send and receive money by phone;

- easy remote payment for goods and services, whether to pay bills from partner companies (e.g. water, electricity or TV service) or to buy airtime;

- financial services enabling them to wire money to and from a bank account, pay wages, etc.

Orange Money is a major source of innovation for the Group, which is broadening its offer by developing an ecosystem of services and partnerships. For example, Orange recently launched several flagship projects:

- Orange Money International Transfer for mobile-to-mobile money transfers between Côte d’Ivoire, Mali and Senegal, which has achieved a market share of 15% in a matter of months;

- a partnership with Visa in Botswana, giving Orange Money subscribers easy access to new transaction options at Orange outlets, online and in licensed vending machines;

- a partnership being deployed with Total on distribution and merchant payment in service stations for greater access to Orange Money.

A number of other projects are planned for 2014: the opening of additional corridors for international transfers, the creation of services for customers with bank accounts, and the development of new interfaces for smartphones, which are becoming more widespread. Moreover, the Group is continuing its efforts to build up its distribution network, especially in the most remote regions, as proximity is a key success factor for Orange Money.

Orange’s ambition is to support the anticipated growth of the mobile payment market in the coming years. The Group also plans to expand its range of affordable financial and banking services and give as many people as possible access to them. Its objective is to turn them into indispensable services in the years to come, just as voice services, text-messaging and Internet access are today.

Distributed by APO (African Press Organization) on behalf of Orange.

Press contacts:

France

01 44 44 93 93

Mylène Blin, mylene.blin@orange.com

Tom Wright, tom.wright@orange.com

UK

Vanessa Clarke

vanessa.clarke@orange.com

+44 (0)7818 848 848

About Orange

Orange (http://www.orange.com) is one of the world’s leading telecommunications operators with sales of 41 billion euros in 2013 and has 165,000 employees worldwide at 31 December 2013, including 102,000 employees in France. Present in 30 countries, the Group has a total customer base of more than 236 million customers at 31 December 2013, including 178 million mobile customers and 15 million broadband internet customers worldwide. Under the Orange Business Services brand, Orange is also one of the world leaders in providing telecommunication services to multinational companies.

Orange is listed on NYSE Euronext Paris (ORA) and on the New York Stock Exchange (ORAN).

For more information (on the web and on your mobile): www.orange.com, www.orange-business.com, www.orange-innovation.tv or to follow us on Twitter: @presseorange.

Orange and any other Orange product or service cited in this press release are trademarks held by Orange or Orange Brand Services Limited.

Source: APO

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FCO Press Release: Foreign Secretary condemns abduction of school girls in northern Nigeria

LONDON, United-Kingdom, April 17, 2014/African Press Organization (APO)/ — Foreign Secretary appalled by the abduction of up to 100 school girls in northern Nigeria, offers UK help.

Reacting to the abduction, Foreign Secretary William Hague said:

“I am appalled by the abduction of up to 100 school girls in Borno State, in northern Nigeria. My thoughts and deepest sympathies are with them, and with their families.

I condemn this cowardly act and those responsible for it. We stand ready to provide assistance to help the Nigerian government ensure that these children can be returned to their families in safety, and to bring to justice those responsible.

This attack follows other reports of Boko Haram’s abduction of women and girls, the barbaric murder of schoolchildren and the use of sexual violence. There is no possible justification for such callous acts, that intentionally target the most vulnerable people in the cruellest way.

The UK is a firm ally and friend of the people of Nigeria and we will continue to offer staunch support and assistance as they combat the threat posed by Boko Haram, and address the wider issues raised by this attack.”

Source: APO

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