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Interpol, Nigerian Police Arrest Three for Cybercrime

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Three suspects alleged to have targeted government and private sector companies in more than 150 countries have been arrested in Nigeria’s commercial capital, Lagos, after a joint INTERPOL, Group-IB and Nigeria Police cybercrime investigation.

The Nigerian nationals are believed to be members of a wider organized crime group responsible for distributing malware, carrying out phishing campaigns and extensive Business Email Compromise scams.

The year-long investigation, which was code-named Operation Falcon, has identified at least 50,000 victims so far.

According to a statement on Interpol’s website, the suspects are alleged to have developed phishing links, domains, and mass mailing campaigns, in which they impersonated representatives of organizations. They then used these campaigns to disseminate 26 malware programmes, spyware and remote access tools, including AgentTesla, Loki, Azorult, Spartan and the nanocore and Remcos Remote Access Trojans.

These programmes were used to infiltrate and monitor the systems of victim organizations and individuals, before launching scams and syphoning funds. According to Group-IB, the prolific gang is believed to have compromised government and private sector companies in more than 150 countries since 2017.

Craig Jones, INTERPOL’s Cybercrime Director, said: “This group was running a well-established criminal business model. From infiltration to cashing in, they used a multitude of tools and techniques to generate maximum profits. We look forward to seeing additional results from this operation.”

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Sudan Will Not Cede Disputed Territory Captured from Ethiopia – al-Tiraifi

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A Sudanese army general has said the country will not cede any of the disputed territories it recently recaptured from the Ethiopian militia along its eastern border.

Local reports quoting the commander of the infantry’s 2nd Division, Maj Gen Haidar al-Tiraifi, say the North African country would not give up an inch of the Sudanese territory of al-Fashaga.

The army general also announced the opening of recruitments to the armed forces.

The general was speaking as he received a support convoy from the Fallata tribe in the eastern state of al-Qadarif, Wednesday morning.

He urged “all the state’s residents to encourage their sons to join the armed forces in order to protect the [country’s] territory and dignity”.

Gen al-Tiraifi said the armed forces are engaged in major projects to develop the border strip region by constructing bridges and roads, in addition to providing basic services in the area to facilitate movement”.

The remarks by the senior military officer comes a day after Ethiopia’s Foreign Ministry spokesperson Dina Mufti ruled out talks between the two countries before Sudan withdrew its troops from the areas they retook recently.

Sudan and Ethiopia are embroiled in a bitter border row over the agricultural rich region of al-Fashaga.

In late December 2020, Sudan declared that it had taken full control of all its territory along the disputed border, previously held by Ethiopian militia.

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Somalia Threatens to Exit Regional Bloc Following Verdict on Dispute with Kenya

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Somalia has threatened to withdraw from a regional bloc after the group ruled in favour of Kenya in a diplomatic dispute between the two countries.

The Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) last month led a fact-finding mission seeking viable intervention to ease tensions between the two East African countries.

Somalia severed diplomatic ties with Kenya on December 15 and wrote the regional bloc of eight members, demanding an independent mission to verify claims that Kenya is arming and training militia to fight the Somalia National Army forces stationed in Gedo near their common border.

The team, led by Djibouti’s Ambassador to Kenya Yacin Elmi Bouh, his counterpart to Somalia Aden Hassan Aden, and an IGAD observer, said they had found no evidence supporting violations by Kenya.

On Wednesday, Mohamed Abdirazak, the Somalia Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Minister said his country will reject the report “in its entirety” because the investigators had been “biased, partisan, unfair, compromised and predetermined to exonerate Kenya.”
“Somalia strongly holds to all its initial accusations against Kenya and will pursue all means to protect her sovereignty,” Abdirazak said in a statement, threatening that his country will withdraw from Igad.

Igad’s report criticised Somalia for severing ties with Kenya, arguing the historical problems faced by the two countries could only be solved through deeper diplomatic engagements.

Kenya on its part said it feels vindicated.

The Kenyan Ministry of Foreign Affairs said the findings of the team are proof that Somalia’s claims were a political ploy meant to distract the region from security concerns.

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DR Congo, Congo-Brazzaville Qualify For CHAN Quarterfinals

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An interesting end to the group games at the African Nations Championship saw the two sides of the River Congo qualify for the quarterfinals.

Democratic Republic of Congo, two-time champions, proved their mettle as they defeated Niger in the third group game to lead the pack with seven points.

Their brothers from Brazzaville also defeated Libya to finish the group as the second-best team with four points.

Congo DR will face hosts Cameroon in a tricky quarterfinal encounter on Saturday while the Republic of Congo will square up against group A leaders, Mali.

In group C, Morocco came from behind to thrash the Cranes of Uganda 5-2 to finish the group with 7 points while the Amavubi of Rwanda sent the streets of Kigali into rapture with a 3-2 victory against the Sparrowhawks of Togo.

Both final group games of group C gave 12 goals as the CHAN came to life.

Morocco will face Zambia, who came second in group D after a 0-0 final day draw against Namibia. Rwanda have set up a quarter-final clash against Guinea in what promises to be an interesting affair in Cameroon.

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