Reports of unrest continue to flow in from Sudans Darfur region –

Tens of thousands of people have been killed and up to 1.85 million others displaced since rebels took up arms in early 2003, partly in protest at the distribution of economic resources in Darfur, which the UN has called the world’s worst humanitarian crisis.African Union (AU) monitors and humanitarian agencies last week found seven villages that have been totally burnt recently and three others abandoned in South Darfur state, but there was no information on who was responsible, the UN Advance Mission in Sudan (UNAMIS) reported.In North Darfur, an AU team found over the weekend that six people were abducted allegedly by three armed men who took their cattle before releasing them. In West Darfur suspected armed tribesmen disrupted a food distribution operation by a non-governmental organization (NGO), while other armed tribesmen looted 50 bags of cereal and five bags of sugar.A report by a UN-appointed commission of inquiry into whether genocide has occurred in Darfur has found that the Government, Janjaweed militia and the rebels are responsible for possible war crimes.The UN World Health Organization (WHO), meanwhile, is helping the Ministry of Health to raise supplementary funds to constitute a vaccine stock in the event of widespread meningitis outbreak.According to the Ministry, between 22 January and 2 February, 69 cases, 23 deaths of them fatal, were reported from Gadaref and Blue Nile states. Since then, more cases and related deaths have been reported form South Kordofan and El Gazeria states. read more

BMW i3 electrifies SMMTs New Year exhibition

SMMT hosts fortnightly displays of products from its 600+ members and began its 2014 exhibition run with one of the year’s most hotly anticipated cars. The BMW i3 and i3 Range Extender went on display this week, showing off the brand’s all-new models, designed from the ground up to be powered by an electric drive system.The new car builds on testing and evaluation work carried out around the world with the BMW Active E programme and the UK-built MINI E. The i3 has a typical range of over 80 miles and can hit 62mph in just 7.2 seconds thanks to the motor’s 170hp output and innovative use of lightweight materials.Benefitting from government’s Plug-In Car Grant, the pure electric version of the i3 costs £25,680. The range extender version is priced at £28,830 and boasts a 180 mile range thanks to its 34hp engine that powers a generator, which maintains the battery charge.The electric vehicle market in the UK has more than tripled in the past two years as the number of models on sale rocketed from just six in 2011, to 17 today.Click through for more information on the number of pure electric and plug-in vehicles registered in 2013.Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window) read more