Senegal’s separatists pushing for the secession of the Casamance region plan to transform into a political party. The group's leader disclosed this when he urged its factions to support the plan. 'The move is in the interest of peace and the reconstruction of Senegal,' said Mr Jean-Marie François Biagui, the group's leader.

Conflict had been brewing in the village of Fanaye in northern Senegal for months before clashes broke out in late October. The launch of a project by an Italian-Senegalese company to grow crops for biofuels on 20,000 acres of local land had been met with scepticism and anger by some villagers; protesters called it 'a form of slavery'. When work began on the project in September, a young man attacked a plantation worker with a sword. A local council meeting descended into violence, buildings more

Police authorities at the Leopold Sedar Senghor airport in Dakar have confirmed that they were preventing the secretary-general of the International Federation of Human Rights from entering the country. A statement issued by the rights group quoted the airport police as saying that Mr Paul Nsapu had been detained since Thursday. Since the beginning of the Arab upheavals, civil society and rights groups in Senegal have been facing difficult times with the regime of President Abdoulaye Wade more

Senegalese opposition parties are incensed after a court sentenced an activist to two years in prison. Mr Malick Nozel Seck was charged with issuing death threats to the five members of the country's Constitutional Council. In a two-page document sent to the Council three weeks ago, Mr Seck allegedly said that the lives of the members would be endangered if they approved the candidacy of President Abdoulaye Wade for next year’s polls. Scheepers wonders whether the June 23 Movement in Senegal suggests a growing recognition that achieving political and social change requires collective consciousness and organisation, and cannot rely solely on the short-term impact of street protests or the individual efforts of any one party.