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Sunday, 10 January 2010


A 30-minute ordeal, under a hail of bullets. The bus carrying the Togo football team is the target. Three people lose their lives. Terrorism strikes the 2010 Africa Cup of Nations in Angola.

A distressed Togolese team pulls out of the tournament as Angolan authorities scramble to reassure the other teams that their security will be guaranteed.

In a morbid kind of way, this terror attack illustrates the different premium attached to loss of human life, depending on whose country's interest is at stake.

A Nigerian man's plot to blow up a US plane as it lands in Detroit is thwarted at the last minute. What follows is a flurry of activities in major airports across the world as security measures are revised and made more stringent.

Another terror strike in the African continent results in three deaths, days before the start of the biggest and most prestigious football tournament, involving 19 top national teams.

Does this grab the world's attention?  Yes. Is the incident as thoroughly investigated and do country's come to the aid of Angola to help it adequately respond and upgrade its security status for the tournament? Not entirely yes.

And here in the UK, what is mainly picked up by the media is the fact that Manchester City star Emmanuel Adebayor was in the Togolese convoy that came under attack.

Admittedly, focusing on the players who play in the English Premier League is a plausible in-point of the story for the British audience. But lives have been lost here and downplaying this fact just leaves a sour taste in the mouth.

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