Six people have been killed in an attack by Renamo rebels in Mozambique, police said on Monday, the latest in a string of violent skirmishes between opposition fighters and government forces.
Two unidentified survivors claimed that government troops had staged the attack, but police laid the blame squarely on rebels.
"Armed men from Renamo ambushed a vehicle on Friday, firing at it until it caught fire," police spokesperson Daniel Macuacua told AFP.
"Six people were burnt to death." All the victims were civilians, though their identities have not been released.
"We are still looking for any potential survivors who may have escaped," Macuacua added.
'Lined up and shot'
But two survivors told the country's independent television channel STV on condition of anonymity, that the government troops were behind the attack.
One claimed police stopped them, checked their identities and drove them into the forest. They were eight farm produce sellers, two of them Bangladeshis.
"They put the Mozambicans in a line and shot them down one by one. Then I was grabbed by the coat but I managed to get out of it and escaped (unharmed)," said the survivor, of Bangladesh origin.
The second survivor said they were taken out to the bush where they were shot "one by and one" as they stepped out of the car.
The man also a Bangladesh, claimed that he jumped out of car, was shot but "hid in the bush," he told STV from a local hospital.
Renamo, which waged a 16-year civil war that ended in 1992, has refused to accept the results of 2014 elections when it was beaten once more by the ruling Frelimo party, in power since independence 40 years ago.
Since 2013, tensions have risen and Renamo fighters have again taken up arms in a battle that it says is against a Frelimo elite who have enriched themselves at the expense of the country.
Uptick in violence
Peace talks are under way, but authorities blame the stand-off for an uptick in violent attacks in northern and central parts of Mozambique.
In May, 13 bodies were found in the restive centre of the country where security forces and Renamo rebels have frequently clashed, while the Mozambican Human Rights League (LDH) claimed at least 83 summary executions had been reported since the start of the year.
Renamo leader Afonso Dhlakama has been living in hiding since October 2015 after he escaped two attacks against his convoy.
He claims government troops are continuously attacking his stronghold in Gorongosa in central Mozambique, in an attempt to lure him out or kill him.
The clashes have intensified in recent months following Dhlakama's declaration in December that he would take power in six of Mozambique's 11 provinces which he claims he won in the 2014 elections.
We wish to apologise to the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) over an online publication on rainbowradionline.com with the headline ''CID takes over Omari Wadie's alleged threats on Prez Mahama''.
We also use the opportunity to also apologise to the Deputy General Secretary of the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC), Koku Anyidoho for referring to him as the petitioner in this matter.
Any damages caused to the CID and the NDC National Officer is deeply regretted. It was not our intention to malign the CID and Koku Anyidoho.
We have taken steps to shutdown the publication online platform.
The Chairman of the Constitutional and Legal Committee of the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP), Pro. Mike Ocquaye has lambasted the President of the Republic of Ghana over his comments regarding unity within the elephant family.
President John Dramani Mahama addressing party supporters during their campaign launch on Sunday described the NPP as an intolerant party.
According to President Mahama, the presidential candidate of the NPP has failed to unite his political party.
''….The mark of a leader is one that is able to unite his supporters behind him. They are now quick to commend people who hurl insults at me and my government. Even the former President Kufuor has not been spared the brunt of their attacks.
“They are even quick to threaten people who differ with the opinions of the leader with physical harm. It is clear that they have already won an Olympic gold medal in insults,” President Mahama stated.
But responding to the comments, the former Second Deputy Speaker of Ghana's Parliament said, President Mahama is unqualified to make any comment on the unity within the NPP.
Speaking in an interview with Kwame Tutu on Frontline on Rainbow Radio 87.5FM, he said he does not understand why the flagbearer of the NDC will focus on the NPP and its unity, when the NDC is noted for the treatment they meted out to Obed Asamoah, Frances Asiam and Bede Zeden some years ago.
According him, the suspensions within the party was done in respect to the law and rule of natural justice as against the intolerant and militant form of leadership in the NDC.
He said the NPP is capable of discipline but the President has failed to discipline his own appointees for being corrupt. He posited that President Mahama only reshuffles his appointees instead of disciplining them.
''The president has not been able to discipline one person because corruption has embroiled his administration...We [NPP] are capable of disciplining and we did what we did in respect to the law and the rule of natural justice. Has President Mahama forgotten what they did to Dr. Obed Asamoah and Dr. Josiah Ayeh? I'm not sure President Mahama knows his own party history, because if he does, he will not talk the way he did.''
Prof. Mike Ocquaye stated that the NDC do not respect the rule of law and natural justice hence it was embarrassing for the president to make such a comment.
In his view, the president goofed with his statement and wondered why he would go to a program without a prepared speech.
''We should take Ghana serious. I am very serious with my comments. A president of the Republic should go to a congress and speak honourably. A president must be seen to be a serious man of this Republic. A president must go with a prepared speech; so after he delivers his speech, it can be used for reference. The president went to the campaign grounds without a prepared speech. He was speaking improperly. This is not done. This country must be taken more seriously. Come and tell us your party people and for that matter the people of Ghana what you have done with the loans you contracted and how you are fighting corruption, you refused to do it.''
Prof. Mike Ocquaye said there were better things President Mahama could have addressed instead of focusing on the NPP.
''It is unfortunate that President Mahama attacked the NPP.'' Prof. Mike Ocquaye concluded that the NPP knows all those the NDC is using to foment trouble in the party and in due time they will address that.
The US says it has sent 15 Guantanamo Bay detainees to the United Arab Emirates - the largest single transfer during President Barack Obama's administration.
The Pentagon says the transfer of 12 Yemeni nationals and three Afghans brings the total number of prisoners down to 61 at the US facility in Cuba.
The released inmates had been held without charge, some for over 14 years.
President Obama wants to close the prison before he leaves office.
The White House also wants to transfer the remaining inmates to the US - but has been blocked by Congress.
Mr Obama believes Guantanamo Bay fuels the recruitment of jihadists and creates stronger anti-US feelings.
In a statement on Monday, the Pentagon said: "The United States is grateful to the government of the United Arab Emirates for its humanitarian gesture and willingness to support ongoing US efforts to close the Guantanamo Bay detention facility."
In April, nine Yemeni prisoners were sent to Saudi Arabia.
The Guantanamo Bay prison is located on an American naval base in south-eastern Cuba.
Former US President George W Bush opened the jail in January 2002 to accommodate foreign terror suspects after the 11 September attacks in 2001.
The facility, which costs $445m (£345m) to run annually, one point held more than 700 detainees.
In February, the White House presented a plan to Congress to close the camp.
But many Republicans remain strongly opposed to bringing inmates to the US, saying they are extremely dangerous and do not belong in civilian prisons.
Ed Royce, the Republican chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, condemned the latest releases, saying: "Once again, hardened terrorists are being released to foreign countries where they will be a threat."
Most of the prisoners freed from Guantanamo Bay - a total of 532 - were released under the previous administration of George W Bush.
The office of the director of national intelligence says 21% of those went on to re-engage in militant activities, while of those released under Mr Obama only 5% have done so.
Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump has vowed to keep the Guantanamo Bay facility open, saying he will fill it with "bad dudes" and "bring back a hell of a lot worse than waterboarding", referring to the controversial interrogation technique human rights activists regard as torture.
Naureen Shah, security and human rights programme director for Amnesty International US, urged Mr Obama to close the facility before he left office, saying, "we are at an extremely dangerous and pivotal point".
The Electoral Commission (EC) has re-registered 52 percent over-56,000 deleted National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) registrants onto the electoral register.
Head of Communications at the EC, Eric Kofi Dzakpasu in an interview with rainbowradioonline.com said the EC was able to re-register 24,287 people representing 39.9% at the end of the first phase.
After the 10 day exercise the EC ruled out the possibility of an extension. They argued that, "It has been four years since they registered. Chances are that a good number of them may no longer have been with us and others may have their own reasons why they would not want to re-register.''
Dzakpasu said despite the low turn-out for the re-registration, the Commission cannot be blamed because it embarked on a considerable campaign to publicise the exercise.
He explained that the Commission run 200 radio commercials translated into all the major dialects in the country.
However, the EC later rescind its decision and extended the exercise after political parties and individuals appealed to the institution.
The re-registration became necessary after the Supreme Court ruled on July 5 that persons who used the NHIS card to register to vote used a wrong document to prove citizenship.
The second phase of exercise saw an extra 5,263 persons re-registered, persons who would other-wise been disenfranchised.
Mr. Dzakpasu has also revealed that as part of the continuous registration exercise, persons who have still not re-registered to do so.
President John Dramani Mahama will today begin his campaign in the Western region.
The campaign will see the President visit markets, schools and a number of government projects in the region as he tries to convince Ghanaians to give him a second term.
His first stop on the campaign trail will be at Agona Nkwanta and he is expected to grace the national fisheries grand durbar at Axim later in the day.
His campaign is two days after the party officially launched its campaign on Sunday at the Cape Coast Stadium.
The NDC believes that they will win the election by a landslide victory. The achievements of President Mahama they said will speak volumes.
Voting the presidential candidate of the NPP, Nana Addo they indicated would be a disaster.
The Central Regional chairman of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) Allotey Jacobs has said that, those behind ‘’who killed Atta Mills’ posters during the party’s campaign launch in Cape Coast would be exposed.
Posters of the late President John Atta Mills were seen in places like Pedu junction, Abura, Adisadel, Moree barrier, Aggrey Memorial SHS, Cape Coast Takoradi highway and around new Cape Coast Stadium which happens to be the venue for the campaign launch.
Reports indicate that some natives of the Central Region, who are upset about the way the late president was catered for and died, are behind the pasting of the posters whiles the NDC also accused the NPP of being behind the incident.
Speaking on frontline, Mr Allotey Jacobs said, they are real indigenes of Cape Coast and there is no corner in Cape Coast that they do not know and so whoever pasted the posters at the time of the launch would definitely be exposed.
‘’They cannot hide, they cannot turn into houseflies, paste the posters and later vanish into thin air, they would definitely be exposed’’ he added.
However in a rebuttal, the Central Regional Secretary of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) Mr Kwamena Duncan denied the allegation that the NPP were behind the incident.
According to him, no member of the NPP would have risked his or life to go and do that considering the heavy security presence at the venue last Sunday.
The presidential candidate of the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP) Nana Akufo Addo says he will set up a Coastal Development Authority if he wins the December 7 polls.
Addressing NPP supporters on Sunday, at the campaign launch of the NPP’s parliamentary candidate for the Sekondi constituency, Andrew Egyapa Mercer, the former Attorney General said said the Coastal Development Authority will help fisherfolk along coastal belt of the country.
“The fishing communities along the coast have been abandoned by the society, though they have a significant contribution to make to the development of Ghana”.
Akufo-Addo added “like the Northern Development Authority, one central feature of the NPP’s 2016 manifesto will be the establishment of a Coastal Development Authority to allow for the rapid development of the constituencies, and the improvement of the living conditions of Ghanaians resident along the coastline”.
The former attorney general stated further that the Mahama led administration over the last eight years, has proven itself to be incompetent at finding solutions to the myriad of problems confronting Ghanaians.
“President Mahama has no solutions to the problems of our country. He is an impediment to the progress of our nation.
"We cannot continue to seek the progress of Ghana with him in office… Ghanaians have become too miserable under Mahama. We are on a rich land, and yet we are drenched in hunger, poverty and suffering. This is not right,” he said.