Top of the Morning: Sudanese Rebels Launch Brazen Attack; French Soldiers are Leaving Timbuktu; Cancer on the Rise in Latin America

Top stories from DAWNS Digest

Sudanese Rebels Launch Brazen Attack

This could be a big story in the coming days. “Sudanese rebels said they attacked five areas in North and South Kordofan states on Saturday, widening an anti-government offensive in one of their most audacious acts in years. ‘This is a significant shift in the war in Sudan,’ Abdel Wahid Mohammed al-Nur, who heads a faction of Darfur’s Sudan Liberation Army, told AFP. ‘We are heading to Khartoum,’ he said. ‘This is not a joke.’ A regional political expert said the attacks were timed to the ‘failure’ of peace talks this week between South Kordofan rebels and the government.” (AFP

French Soldiers are Leaving Timbuktu. Will it Hold?

Here’s a key test of whether Malian and African forces are up to the task. “The reallocation of about 100 French soldiers to the northeastern town of Gao will pose a critical test as to whether Malian soldiers and their counterparts from neighboring nations will be able to maintain security in the area still threatened by jihadists. Soldiers from neighboring Burkina Faso officially took over last week in Timbuktu, and French soldiers are now departing.” (NewsObserver

Cancer on the Rise in Latin America

Latin America is getting richer…and more people are dying of chronic illnesses because of it. “A multinational team of researchers found the current state of cancer care and prevention in Latin America is incompatible with the socioeconomic changes taking place in the region, where an increasingly urban populace faces mounting lifestyle-related cancer risks. Writing in the Lancet Oncology medical journal, researchers said Latin Americans are enjoying the benefits of growing economic prosperity, but also are leading longer, more sedentary lives, accompanied by a rise in alcohol consumption, smoking and obesity. That is not only leading to an increase in cancer rates, which are expected to rise more than 33 percent in the region by 2020, but a disproportionately high number of cancer deaths.” (Voice of America