Enernet Global acquires KPS Power Africa

Distributed energy service company accelerates presence in Africa with acquisition of African subsidiary of KPS Australia

NEW YORK, Nov. 22, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Enernet Global Inc. (“Enernet”), a distributed energy service company whose mission is to decarbonise the world’s supply chains, acquired KPS Power Africa (“KPSPA”) to accelerate presence in African mining.

Enernet’s global footprint enables it to provide tailored energy solutions for mining, commercial, industrial, remote community and utility customers across its operations in Australia, the Philippines, the Caribbean and Sub-Saharan Africa. KPSPA finances, builds, owns and operates hybrid power plants for the mining sector in Africa. The transaction provides Enernet with a portfolio of projects and expert team to rapidly scale the business.

“The combination of KPS Power Africa’s deep roots in mining and power in Africa combined with Enernet’s world-leading expertise on renewable hybrid plants and competitive capital enables us to bring a unique solution to mines across Africa,” said Paul Matthews, Enernet and KPSPA’s CEO. “Mines are under increasing pressure to reduce scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions and their CEOs must report to investors and the market on their ambitions to reduce CO2. Together, we finance, build and operate cheaper, cleaner and more reliable power solutions for customers across Sub-Saharan Africa.”

“The acquisition of KPSPA by Enernet Global is a great strategic move which allows both companies to advance hybrid power generation within mining in Africa. KPSPA has increased its exposure to the renewable energy market and Enernet Global its presence in the African mining industry, which is ideally positioned for renewable hybrid system,” said Ben Zikmundovsky, KPSPA’s General Manager.

Enernet and KPSPA deploy distributed on- and off-grid generation projects that integrate renewable energy, battery storage, cogeneration and existing thermal or grid supply. System design and operational optimization are underpinned by Enernet’s patented technology platform.

Selling energy and services through power purchase agreements, systems are delivered at no capital cost to customers and tailored to their specific energy needs. This lowers costs, adds energy resilience and independence, and dramatically reduces emissions mines in Africa.

About Enernet Global Inc (“Enernet”)
Enernet is a distributed energy service provider that finances, builds, owns and operates microgrids and drives the adoption of renewable energy, battery storage and energy efficiency solutions that displace CO2 emissions. Built on the company’s proprietary software platform, Enernet’s Energy-as-a-Service offering benefits on- and off-grid customers by providing less expensive, more resilient power solutions at no capital outlay for customers.

Enernet has operations in Australia, the Philippines, the Caribbean and Sub-Saharan Africa, where it focuses on power solutions for sectors that include island development, mining, commercial and industrial, remote communities, agriculture, utilities and hospitality.

About KPS Power Africa (“KPSPA”)
KPS Power Africa specialises in designing, building, owning and operating power stations for African mining operations. As a leading contract power supplier to the mining sector, KPSPA provides independent power generation services with the benefit of over 30 years’ experience in African mining.

Servicing all of Africa, KPSPA’s purpose-built power generation systems include design, construction, operation and maintenance, reducing customers’ capital and maintenance requirements. Capabilities and expertise cover multiple technologies and deliver benchmark reliability and fuel efficiency for our customers’ mining operations.

Media contact:
Paul Matthews
Enernet Global Inc.
Office: +1 541 292 6422
Email: pmatthews@enernetglobal.com

Zenas BioPharma Acquires Exclusive Worldwide Rights to Obexelimab from Xencor

Xencor receives rights to additional equity in Zenas as upfront payment and is eligible for up to $480 million in potential milestone payments and royalties on net sales of commercialized products

Obexelimab is a novel bifunctional antibody with first-in-class potential to treat autoimmune diseases

MONROVIA, Calif., HONG KONG and BOSTON, Nov. 21, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Xencor, Inc. (NASDAQ: XNCR), a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company developing engineered monoclonal antibodies and cytokines for the treatment of cancer and autoimmune diseases, and Zenas BioPharma (“Zenas”), a global biopharmaceutical company based in the USA and China committed to the development and delivery of immune-based therapies, today announced that Zenas has acquired from Xencor exclusive worldwide rights to develop, manufacture and commercialize the investigational antibody obexelimab.

Obexelimab is a potential first-in-class bifunctional antibody that targets CD19 with its variable domain and uses Xencor’s XmAb® Immune Inhibitor Fc Domain to target FcγRIIb, a receptor that inhibits the function of B-cells, which are important components in the immune system. Xencor demonstrated through early-stage clinical studies that obexelimab effectively inhibits B-cell function without depleting the cells and generates an encouraging treatment effect in patients with multiple autoimmune diseases.

“Zenas is advancing a broad pipeline of differentiated drug candidates that are intended to bring best-in-class innovation to patients with underserved medical needs,” said Hua Mu, Ph.D., MD, president and chief executive officer at Zenas. “Today, we are pleased to add obexelimab to our portfolio, and based on its clinical profile, we believe it is positioned as a first-in-class candidate with the potential to treat numerous autoimmune diseases.”

“Obexelimab’s highly potent and broad blockade of B-cell activation—without depleting B cells—differentiates it from other B-cell targeting therapies, and it has demonstrated disease-modifying activity in settings where B-cell inhibition is a proven strategy,” said Bassil Dahiyat, Ph.D., president and chief executive officer at Xencor. “In Zenas BioPharma, we have found a partner committed to broadly and aggressively developing therapeutics like obexelimab for patients with autoimmune diseases, enabling Xencor’s continued focus on the growing opportunities provided by our XmAb bispecific antibody and cytokine pipeline.”

Under the terms of the new agreement, Zenas will issue to Xencor a warrant giving Xencor the right to acquire additional Zenas equity, such that Xencor’s total equity in Zenas would be 15% of its fully diluted capitalization following the closing of Zenas’ next round of equity financing, subject to certain requirements. Xencor previously received equity in Zenas under a separate license agreement. Xencor is also eligible to receive up to $480 million based on the achievement of certain clinical development, regulatory and commercialization milestones and is eligible to receive tiered, mid-single digit to mid-teen percent royalties upon commercialization of obexelimab, dependent on geography. Zenas will have sole responsibility for advancing the research, development, regulatory and commercial activities of obexelimab worldwide.

About Xencor, Inc.

Xencor is a clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company developing engineered monoclonal antibodies and cytokines for the treatment of cancer and autoimmune diseases. Currently, 22 candidates engineered with Xencor’s XmAb® technology are in clinical development internally and with partners. Xencor’s XmAb antibody engineering technology enables small changes to the structure of proteins resulting in new mechanisms of therapeutic action. For more information, please visit www.xencor.com.

About Zenas BioPharma

Zenas BioPharma is a global biopharmaceutical company based in the USA and China committed to becoming a leader in the development and delivery of immune-based therapies for patients in the US, China and around the world. Zenas is rapidly advancing a deep pipeline of innovative therapeutics that continues to grow through our successful business development strategy. Our experienced leadership team and network of business partners drive operational excellence to deliver potentially transformative therapies to improve the lives of those facing autoimmune and rare diseases. For more information about Zenas BioPharma, please visit www.zenasbio.com and follow us on Twitter at @ZenasBioPharma and LinkedIn.

Xencor Forward-Looking Statements

Certain statements contained in this press release may constitute forward-looking statements within the meaning of applicable securities laws. Forward-looking statements include statements that are not purely statements of historical fact, and can generally be identified by our use of words such as “potential,” “can,” “will,” “plan,” “may,” “could,” “would,” “expect,” “anticipate,” “seek,” “look forward,” “believe,” “committed,” “investigational,” and similar terms, or by express or implied discussions relating to the development of obexelimab as a potential treatment for patients with autoimmune diseases; the commercial potential of obexelimab; the safety, tolerability, efficacy and pharmacokinetics of obexelimab; the quotations from Xencor’s president and chief executive officer; and other statements that are not purely statements of historical fact. Such statements are made on the basis of the current beliefs, expectations, and assumptions of the management of Xencor and are subject to significant known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause actual results, performance or achievements and the timing of events to be materially different from those implied by such statements, and therefore these statements should not be read as guarantees of future performance or results. Such risks include, without limitation, the risks associated with the process of discovering, developing, manufacturing and commercializing drugs that are safe and effective for use as human therapeutics and other risks described in Xencor’s public securities filings. For a discussion of these and other factors, please refer to Xencor’s annual report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2020 as well as Xencor’s subsequent filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission. You are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date hereof. This caution is made under the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, as amended to date. All forward-looking statements are qualified in their entirety by this cautionary statement and Xencor undertakes no obligation to revise or update this press release to reflect events or circumstances after the date hereof, except as required by law.

Contacts

Xencor Investor Contact:
Charles Liles
cliles@xencor.com

Xencor Media Contact:
Jason I. Spark
Canale Communications
619-849-6005
jason@canalecomm.com

Zenas Investor Contact:
IR@zenasbio.com

Zenas Media Contact:
Lauren Bartlett
lauren.bartlett@zenasbio.com

Zenas BioPharma Adquire Direitos Mundiais Exclusivos do Obexelimab da Xencor

Xencor recebe direitos sobre ações adicionais da Zenas como pagamento antecipado e é elegível para até US$ 480 milhões em pagamentos de marcos potenciais e royalties sobre vendas líquidas de produtos comercializados

O obexelimab é um novo anticorpo biespecífico com potencial de primeira classe para tratar doenças autoimunes

MONROVIA, Califórnia, HONG KONG e BOSTON, Nov. 21, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — A Xencor, Inc. (NASDAQ: XNCR), uma empresa biofarmacêutica de estágio clínico que desenvolve citocinas e anticorpos monoclonais projetados para o tratamento de câncer e doenças autoimunes, e a Zenas BioPharma (“Zenas”), uma empresa biofarmacêutica global com sede nos EUA e na China comprometida com o desenvolvimento e oferta de terapias imunológicas, anunciou hoje que Zenas adquiriu da Xencor direitos exclusivos em todo o mundo para desenvolvimento, fabricação e comercialização do anticorpo investigacional obexelimab.

O obexelimab é um potencial anticorpo bifuncional de primeira classe que tem como alvo o CD19 com seu domínio variável e que usa o domínio Fc do inibidor imunológico XmAb ® da Xencor para ter como alvo o FcγRIIb, um receptor que inibe a função das células B, os componentes importantes no sistema imunológico. A Xencor comprovou, através de estudos clínicos em fase inicial, que o obexelimab inibe eficazmente a função das células B sem reduzir as células, e gera um efeito encorajador no tratamento de doentes com múltiplas doenças autoimunes.

“A Zenas está desenvolvendo um amplo pipeline de candidatos a medicamentos diferenciados que se destinam a aprimorar a inovação da categoria para pacientes com necessidades médicas mal atendidas”, disse Hua Mu, Ph.D., MD, presidente e diretor executivo da Zenas. “É com prazer que incluímos o obexelimab no nosso portfólio e, com base no seu perfil clínico, acreditamos que ele está bem-posicionado como candidato de primeira classe com potencial para tratamento de inúmeras doenças autoimunes.”

“O bloqueio altamente potente e amplo da ativação das células B do Obexelimab – sem reduzir as células B – o diferencia das outras terapias direcionadas às células B, além de ter comprovado a atividade modificadora da doença em ambientes onde a inibição das células B é uma estratégia comprovada”, disse Bassil Dahiyat, Ph.D., presidente e diretor executivo da Xencor. “A Zenas BioPharma encontrou um parceiro comprometido com o desenvolvimento amplo e agressivo de terapêuticas como obexelimab para pacientes com doenças autoimunes, permitindo o foco contínuo da Xencor nas oportunidades crescentes fornecidas pelo nosso pipeline de citocinas e de anticorpo biespecífico XmAb.”

Sob os termos do novo contrato, a Zenas emitirá para a Xencor uma autorização para a Xencor adquirir capital adicional da Zenas, de modo que o capital total da Xencor na Zenas seria de 15% da sua capitalização totalmente diluída após o fechamento da próxima rodada de financiamento de capital da Zenas, sujeito a certos requisitos. A Xencor recebeu anteriormente ações da Zenas sob um contrato de licença separado. A Xencor também é elegível para receber até US$ 480 milhões com base na realização de certos marcos de desenvolvimento clínico, regulatório e de comercialização, e também é elegível para receber royalties escalonados, de um dígito a dois dígitos de percentual após a comercialização do obexelimab, de acordo com a área geográfica. A Zenas será a única responsável pelo avanço das atividades de pesquisa, desenvolvimento, regulatórias e comerciais do obexelimab em todo o mundo.

Sobre a Xencor, Inc.

O Xencor é uma empresa biofarmacêutica de estágio clínico que desenvolve citocinas e anticorpos monoclonais manipulados para o tratamento de câncer e de doenças autoimunes. No momento, 22 candidatos projetados com a tecnologia XmAb® da Xencor estão em desenvolvimento clínico interno e com parceiros. A tecnologia de engenharia de anticorpos XmAb da Xencor permite pequenas mudanças na estrutura das proteínas, resultando em novos mecanismos de ação terapêutica. Para mais informação, visite www.xencor.com.

Sobre a Zenas BioPharma

A Zenas BioPharma é uma empresa biofarmacêutica mundial com sedes nos EUA e na China, comprometida em se tornar líder global no desenvolvimento e oferta de terapias imunológicas para pacientes nos EUA, China e em todo o mundo. A Zenas está avançando rapidamente um vasto pipeline de terapêuticas inovadoras que continua a crescer por meio da nossa estratégia de desenvolvimento de negócios de sucesso. Nossa experiente equipe de liderança e rede de parceiros de negócios impulsionam a excelência operacional para oferecer terapias potencialmente transformadoras para melhorar a vida das pessoas que enfrentam doenças autoimunes e raras. Para mais informação sobre a Zenas BioPharma, visite www.zenasbio.com e siga-nos no Twitter em @ZenasBioPharma e LinkedIn.

Declarações de Previsão da Xencor

Certas declarações contidas neste comunicado de imprensa podem ser consideradas “declarações de previsão” do termo de títulos aplicáveis, As declarações de previsão incluem declarações que não são puramente declarações de fatos históricos e geralmente podem ser identificadas pelas palavras “potencial”, “pode”, “irá”, “planeja”, “deve”, “poderia”, “iria”, “espera”, “antecipa”, “procura”, futuro”, “acredita”, “comprometido”, “investigacional” e termos semelhantes, ou por discussões expressas ou implícitas relacionadas ao desenvolvimento do obexelimab como tratamento potencial de pacientes com doenças autoimunes; o potencial comercial do obexelimab; a segurança, tolerabilidade, eficácia e farmacocinética do obexelimab; as citações do presidente e do diretor executivo da Xencor; e outras declarações que não sejam puramente declarações de fatos históricos. Essas declarações são feitas com base nas convicções, expectativas e suposições da administração da Xencor no momento, e estão sujeitas a riscos, incertezas e outros fatores significativos conhecidos e desconhecidos que podem fazer com que os resultados, desempenho ou realizações e ocasião dos eventos sejam substancialmente diferentes dos implícitos em tais declarações e, portanto, essas declarações não devem ser interpretadas como garantias de desempenho ou resultados futuros. Tais riscos incluem, sem limitação, os riscos associados ao processo de descoberta, desenvolvimento, fabricação e comercialização de medicamentos seguros e eficazes para uso como terapêutica humana, e outros riscos descritos nos registros de títulos públicos da Xencor. Para uma discussão sobre esses e outros fatores, consulte o relatório anual da Xencor no Formulário 10-K do exercício encerrado em 31 de dezembro de 2020, bem como os registros subsequentes da Xencor na SEC dos EUA. O investidor não deve depositar confiança indevida nas declarações de previsão, que são válidas somente até a presente data. Este aviso está em conformidade com as disposições de porto seguro da Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, alterada até a presente data. Todas as declarações de previsão são totalmente qualificadas por esta declaração de alerta e, nem a MannKind, nem a Biomm, assumem nenhuma obrigação de atualizar ou revisar quaisquer declarações de previsão para revelar eventos ou circunstâncias após a data deste comunicado de imprensa.

Contato

Contato para Investidor da Xencor:
Charles Liles
cliles@xencor.com

Contato para Mídia da Xencor:
Jason I. Spark
Canale Communications
619-849-6005
jason@canalecomm.com

Contato para Investidor da Zenas:
IR@zenasbio.com

Contato para Mídia da Zenas:
Lauren Bartlett
lauren.bartlett@zenasbio.com

Zenas BioPharma acquiert des droits mondiaux exclusifs sur l’Obexelimab auprès de Xencor

Xencor reçoit des droits sur des capitaux propres supplémentaires dans Zenas en tant que paiement initial et est éligible à un maximum de 480 millions de dollars en paiements échelonnés potentiels et redevances sur le chiffre d’affaires net des produits commercialisés

L’Obexelimab est un nouvel anticorps bispécifique avec un potentiel de premier ordre pour traiter les maladies auto-immunes

MONROVIA, Californie., HONG KONG et BOSTON, 22 nov. 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) —  Xencor, Inc. (NASDAQ: XNCR), une société biopharmaceutique en phase clinique qui développe des anticorps monoclonaux et des cytokines pour le traitement du cancer et des maladies auto-immunes, et Zenas BioPharma (« Zenas »), une société biopharmaceutique mondiale basée aux États-Unis et en Chine engagée dans le développement et l’administration de thérapies immunitaires, ont annoncé aujourd’hui que Zenas avait acquis les droits exclusifs mondiaux de développement, de fabrication et de commercialisation de l’anticorps expérimental obexelimab.

L’Obexelimab est un nouvel anticorps bifonctionnel potentiel qui cible le CD19 avec son domaine variable et utilise le domaine Fc de l’inhibiteur immunitaire XmAb®  de Xencor pour cibler le FcyRIIB, un récepteur qui inhibe la fonction des cellules B, qui sont des composants importants du système immunitaire. Xencor a démontré par le biais d’études cliniques à un stade précoce que l’obexelimab inhibe efficacement la fonction des cellules B sans épuiser les cellules et génère un effet de traitement encourageant chez les patients atteints de multiples maladies auto-immunes.

« Zenas fait progresser un large éventail de médicaments candidats différenciés qui visent à apporter la meilleure innovation de sa catégorie aux patients ayant des besoins médicaux non satisfaits », a déclaré Hua Mu, Ph.D., MD, président-directeur général de Zenas. « Aujourd’hui, nous sommes ravis d’ajouter l’obexelimab à notre portefeuille, et en nous basant sur son profil clinique, nous pensons qu’il s’agit d’un candidat de première classe ayant le potentiel de traiter de nombreuses maladies auto-immunes. »

« Le blocage très puissant et étendu de l’activation des cellules B d’Obexelimab, sans épuiser les cellules B, le distingue des autres thérapies ciblant les cellules B, et il a démontré une activité modifiante de la maladie dans les environnements où l’inhibition des cellules B est une stratégie éprouvée », a déclaré Bassil Dahiyat, Ph.D., président-directeur général de Xencor. « Nous avons trouvé en Zenas BioPharma un partenaire engagé dans le développement large et agressif de traitements tels que l’obexelimab pour les patients atteints de maladies auto-immunes, permettant à Xencor de continuer à se concentrer sur les opportunités croissantes offertes par notre pipeline d’anticorps bispécifique XmAb et de cytokines. »

En vertu des termes du nouvel accord, Zenas émettra à Xencor un bon de souscription donnant à Xencor le droit d’acquérir des capitaux propres Zenas supplémentaires, de sorte que les capitaux propres totaux de Xencor dans Zenas représenteraient 15 % de sa capitalisation entièrement diluée après la clôture du prochain cycle de financement des capitaux propres de Zenas, sous réserve de certaines exigences. Xencor avait précédemment reçu des capitaux propres dans Zenas dans le cadre d’un accord de licence séparé. Xencor pourrait également recevoir jusqu’à 480 millions de dollars en se basant sur la réalisation de certaines étapes de développement clinique, de réglementation et de commercialisation et pourrait recevoir des redevances échelonnées à un chiffre moyen à un pourcentage moyen lors de la commercialisation de l’obexelimab, en fonction de la géographie. Zenas aura la seule responsabilité de faire progresser les activités de recherche, de développement, réglementaires et commerciales d’obexelimab dans le monde entier.

À propos de Xencor, Inc.

Xencor est une société biopharmaceutique en phase clinique qui développe des anticorps monoclonaux et des cytokines conçus pour le traitement du cancer et des maladies auto-immunes. Actuellement, 22 candidats conçus avec la technologie XmAb ®   de Xencor sont en cours de développement clinique en interne et avec des partenaires. La technologie d’ingénierie des anticorps XmAb de Xencor permet de petits changements dans la structure des protéines, entraînant de nouveaux mécanismes d’action thérapeutique. Pour plus d’informations, consultez notre site www.xencor.com.

À propos de Zenas BioPharma

Zenas BioPharma est une société biopharmaceutique mondiale basée en Chine et aux États-Unis déterminée à devenir un leader dans le développement et la fourniture de traitements immunitaires pour les patients aux États-Unis, en Chine et dans le monde entier. Zenas fait rapidement progresser un vaste pipeline de traitements innovants qui continue de s’accroître grâce à notre stratégie de développement commercial fructueuse. Notre équipe de direction expérimentée et notre réseau de partenaires commerciaux stimulent l’excellence opérationnelle pour apporter des thérapies potentiellement transformatrices afin d’améliorer la vie des personnes confrontées à des maladies rares et auto-immunes. Pour tout complément d’information sur Zenas BioPharma, veuillez consulter le sitewww.zenasbio.com et nous suivre sur Twitter à l’adresse @ZenasBioPharma et LinkedIn.

Énoncés prospectifs de Xencor

Certaines déclarations du présent communiqué de presse constituent des « énoncés prospectifs » au sens des lois en vigueur sur les valeurs mobilières. Les énoncés prospectifs incluent des énoncés qui ne sont pas purement des énoncés de faits historiques, et peuvent généralement être identifiés par l’utilisation de mots tels que « potentiel », « peut », « fera », « prévoir », « peut-être », « pourrai », « s’attendre à », « anticiper », « chercher », « être impatient de », « croire », « être engagé », « expérimental » et des termes similaires, soit par des discussions expresses ou implicites relatives au développement de l’obexelimab en tant que traitement potentiel pour les patients atteints de maladies auto-immunes ; le potentiel commercial de l’obexelimab ; la sécurité, la tolérabilité, l’efficacité et la pharmacocinétique de l’obexelimab ; les citations du président-directeur général de Xencor ; et d’autres déclarations qui ne sont pas de simples déclarations de faits historiques. Ces énoncés sont formulés sur la base des convictions, attentes et hypothèses actuelles de la direction de Xencor et sont assujettis à des risques connus et inconnus, incertitudes et autres facteurs importants, susceptibles d’entraîner des résultats, des performances ou des réalisations réels et un calendrier d’événements sensiblement différent de ceux sous-entendus par ces énoncés, et par conséquent, ces énoncés ne doivent pas être lus comme des garanties de performances ou de résultats futurs. Ces risques incluent, sans s’y limiter, les risques associés au processus de découverte, de développement, de fabrication et de commercialisation de médicaments sûrs et efficaces pour une utilisation en tant que traitements humains et d’autres risques décrits dans les dépôts de titres publics de Xencor. Pour une discussion sur ces facteurs et d’autres, veuillez consulter le rapport annuel de Xencor sur le formulaire 10-K pour l’exercice clos le 31 décembre 2020, ainsi que les documents déposés ultérieurement par Xencor auprès de la Securities and Exchange Commission. Nous vous prions de ne pas vous fier indûment à ces énoncés prospectifs, qui ne sont valables qu’à la date des présentes. Cette mise en garde est faite en vertu des dispositions relatives aux règles d’exonération de la loi américaine intitulée Private Securities Litigation Reform Act de 1995, telle qu’amendée à ce jour. Tous les énoncés prospectifs sont qualifiés dans leur intégralité par la présente mise en garde et Xencor décline toute obligation de réviser ou de mettre à jour le présent communiqué de presse afin de refléter des événements ou des circonstances postérieurs à la date des présentes, sauf si la loi l’exige.

Contacts

Contact investisseurs chez Xencor :
Charles Liles
cliles@xencor.com

Contact médias chez Xencor :
Jason I. Spark
Canale Communications
619-849-6005
jason@canalecomm.com

Contact investisseurs chez Zenas :
IR@zenasbio.com

Contact médias chez Zenas :
Lauren Bartlett
lauren.bartlett@zenasbio.com

FIFA publishes shortlists for annual best player awards

Zurich, Chelsea won the Champions League and England reached the European Championship final, but no Englishmen are on the shortlists for FIFA’s annual awards published on Monday.

Jorginho, a double European champion with Chelsea and Italy, was joined by club teammate N’Golo Kanté among 11 candidates to be voted FIFA’s best player in the 2020-21 season.

Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo took their usual places on the list with last year’s winner, Robert Lewandowski, said an AP report.

Mohamed Salah, Kylian Mbappé, Erling Haaland, Kevin De Bruyne, Karim Benzema and Neymar complete the shortlist decided by a FIFA-appointed panel.

There are no defenders or goalkeepers in contention for the main FIFA award, though goalkeepers have their own separate award.

Italy’s Gianluigi Donnarumma, who was named player of the tournament at Euro 2020, is among the five goalkeeping candidates.

Votes from national team captains and coaches, fans and media worldwide will be collected through Dec. 10.

A virtual ceremony will be held on Jan. 17 remotely, because of the COVID-19 pandemic, from FIFA headquarters in Zurich.

Source: Bahrain News Agency

Somali Investigators: Intelligence Agency Not Responsible for Female Spy Disappearance

MOGADISHU — Investigators in Somalia have concluded that the country’s National Intelligence and Security Agency was not responsible for the presumed death of one of its officers. The committee said there was no evidence the agency was involved in the June disappearance of 24-year-old Ikram Tahlil Farah. Tahlil’s parents have rejected the committee’s findings and blame the spy agency, which blames the death on the al-Shabab terrorist group.

General Abdullahi Bulle Kamey, the chief prosecutor of the Armed Forces Court, said his team’s investigation found no sign that Somalia’s chief intelligence agency was responsible for disappearance and presumed death of the officer.

He said the investigators tasked have found no evidence whatsoever to link the National Intelligence and Security Agency (NISA) officials to the missing female spy Ikran Tahlil Farah. He also asked that anyone with information in the case present it to the authorities.

The mother of the missing cyber security intelligence official, Qali Mohamed Guhad, dismissed the committee’s findings.

She said that they were very astonished with the verdict and her family was not expecting such result. They do not accept the outcome at all, she added.

Ismail Dahir is a security analyst and former deputy director of Somalia’s spy agency. He alleges that NISA officials — including its acting director — hold sway over the lower house of parliament.

He said acquitting the suspects without the submitting the process to the court is unlawful and will damage the credibility of the ongoing electoral process, adding that the family of the slain spy might resort to seeking alternative means to take justice into their own hands.

Farah was an officer for NISA’s cyber security unit. She was last seen June 26 near the agency’s headquarters in Mogadishu.

To date, no one has found her body, but NISA declared her dead in September.

In an earlier report, the spy agency blamed the death of their officer on the militant group al-Shabab. But the group has strongly denied any involvement.

Source: Voice of America

Burial for Yemeni migrant who died on Poland-Belarus border

On an overcast on Sunday amid fields and forest, a few men from Poland’s small Muslim community laid to rest a Yemeni migrant who died of cold and fatigue while trying to cross into the European Union from Belarus.

After saying a prayer outside the old wooden mosque of the Polish border village of Bohoniki, the men transported the coffin to a cemetery located on a hill of pine trees.

Mustafa Mohammed Murshid al-Raymi, who died age 37, was buried in the presence of his brother and the Yemeni ambassador to Poland. His grave was located alongside those of other migrants who have died in the border crisis that erupted this summer.

“It’s an expression of our respect for and solidarity with this man who died in horrible conditions. It’s a real tragedy,” said burial attendee Ryszard Mozdabaiev, a Muslim who fled Crimea for Poland eight years ago.

“This is politics that despise people,” he said alongside friends from Crimea and Chechnya who were all well acquainted with the experience of being a migrant.

The tiny local Muslim community – mostly descendents of the Tatars whose presence in Poland’s northeast dates back to the 14th century – have taken it upon themselves to organise proper burials for the migrants who have died in the border crisis.

“I fear there will be more burials soon,” said Maciej Szczesnowicz, the local Muslim leader.

His community in Bohoniki has been helping the migrants on the border by collecting clothes and food and raising funds. They have also been lending a hand to troops in the area by cooking them soup every day.

Polish media say at least 11 migrants have died since the crisis began. Last week, Belarus cleared a makeshift border encampment, sending 2,000 migrants to a nearby logistics centre.

But Polish border guards report that migrants continue to try their luck at crossing the border.

The West accuses Belarus of creating the crisis by bringing in would-be migrants – mostly from the Middle East – and taking them to the border with promises of an easy crossing into the European Union.

Belarus has denied the claim, instead criticising the EU for not taking in the migrants.

Caught in the middle, migrants often report being forced to cross the border by Belarusian officials, before then being pushed back into Belarus by Polish authorities.

Yemen’s foreign ministry said Saturday it was working on bringing back its citizens from the border, including eight on the Belarusian side and nine in Poland.

Source: Nam News Network

More Protests Expected in Sudan Despite Reinstatement of Prime Minister

NAIROBI, KENYA — Sudan’s Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok has been reinstated in a deal with the military, following weeks of unrest sparked by a coup. Despite the military promising to release all political prisoners, protesters have vowed to continue demonstrating for democracy.

Prime Minister Abdalla Hamdok got his power back to continue with the country’s political transition. He had been kept under house arrest since October 25 when the military overthrew his government and arrested some politicians.

Sulaima Al Khalifa, a human rights activist in Sudan, said the current deal did not change the situation on the ground.

“We did not expect it. It was a surprise and shock. We fear there is a lot of pressure happening, Hamdok is under pressure because it’s not even logical and what he has done is not even logical according to the serious event that has happened. Because the violation of the rights of the people is still ongoing. Since 25th we don’t have a state,” she said.

On Sunday, a teenager was shot dead during a protest in the city of Omdurman according to a pro-democracy Sudanese doctors group. The Central Committee of Sudanese Doctors said 41 people have died so far since the coup.

Jonas Horner, a senior analyst on Sudan affairs at the International Crisis Group, said the prime minister will hold less power after Sunday’s political deal in Khartoum.

“Hamdok appears to have been returned to power under some duress. He has made of the calculation he would rather be inside the process that now appears to be solidly controlled by the military, by the coup-makers from October 25 rather than being outside. The military had relied on bringing Hamdok back in that had been their key strategic approach. Hamdok does bring the military government a level of credibility,” said Horner.

Some people in Sudan see Hamdok as a political hero for standing up to the military before and after the coup.

Horner predicts that sentiment will change drastically in the streets and Hamdok will find himself in a difficult political position.

“He will find himself far less popular with the street and he will find himself very low in this power that he will need to turn this back around in the direction of constituencies on the streets that he really should be pushing for. The relationship between the military and the street will only get worse. The military has shown its cards, it’s clearly not seeking to deliver on the transition that people had called for during Sudan’s revolution in 2018-2019,” said Horner.

In December 2018, Sudanese took to the streets demanding good governance and respect for the rule of law. The street protest eventually drove former president Omar al-Bashir out of power after 30 years in office.

Source: Voice of America