Thursday, December 29, 2011

Egypt Raids Offices of Nonprofits, 3 Backed by U.S.

Egypt Raids Offices of Nonprofits, 3 Backed by U.S.


CAIRO — Security forces shut down three American-financed democracy-building groups and as many as six other nonprofit organizations on Thursday, in a crackdown that signaled a new low in relations between Washington and Egypt's military rulers.

Two of the organizations, the National Democratic Institute and the International Republican Institute, had been formally authorized by the Egyptian government to monitor the parliamentary elections set to resume next week. Critics said the surprise raids contradicted the military's pledge to hold a fair and transparent vote.

The other American-financed pro-democracy group whose offices were closed, the advocacy group Freedom House, had completed its application for official recognition just three days ago. An American group that helps train Egyptian journalists was among the other nonprofit groups raided.

Human rights activists said security forces barging into the offices of respected international organizations was unprecedented, even under the police state of President Hosni Mubarak, who was ousted this year.

The raids are the latest and most forceful effort yet by the country's ruling generals to crack down on perceived sources of criticism amid rising calls from Egyptian politicians and protesters and some Western leaders for the military to hand over power to a civilian government. Those calls were punctuated by Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton's expression of outrage last week over the military's beating and stripping of female demonstrators in Tahrir Square.

On Thursday, a State Department spokeswoman announced that it was "deeply concerned" by the raids.

"Suffice it to say we don't think that this action is justified," the spokeswoman, Victoria Nuland, said. "We want to see the harassment end," she added, calling the raids "inconsistent with the bilateral cooperation we've had over many years."

Another senior administration official, speaking on the condition of anonymity, said that in private channels, the United States had sent an even stronger message: "This crosses a line."

"It's triggered by ongoing concerns about control," the official added, as the ruling military council confronted the mounting pressure to hand over power.

Others called the raids a major challenge to Washington's policy toward Egypt, which receives $1.3 billion a year in American military aid.

"It is a major escalation in the Egyptian government's crackdown on civil society organizations, and it is unprecedented in its attack on international organizations like Freedom House, which is funded in large part by the United States government," said Charles Dunne, director of Middle East and North Africa Programs at the organization, which advocates democratic reforms. "The military council is saying we are happy to take your $1.3 billion a year, but we are not happy when you do things like defending human rights and supporting democracy."

The state news media said that the raids were part of an investigation into what it described as illegal foreign financing.

Contingents of soldiers and security officers armed with automatic weapons and wearing bulletproof vests burst into the offices of the nonprofit organizations at roughly the same time Thursday, around 1 p.m.

The officers provided no warrants or explanations, according to officials at several of the groups. They detained the groups' employees inside for more than five hours in some places. The security forces collected stacks of binders and files, confiscated computers, and sealed the doors as they left.

At the National Democratic Institute's office in Cairo, armed men in uniforms and plain clothes could be seen through a locked gate slicing open boxes of files stacked in a garage.

"Nobody understands what's going on," said Belal Mostafa Gooda, an Egyptian employee of the National Democratic Institute, in a furtive phone call from inside its locked gate during the raid. "We can't move inside or go outside," he said, adding, "They're searching all the papers and files and all laptops, and we don't know what will happen."

The National Democratic Institute receives United States government financing, promotes democracy abroad and says it is loosely affiliated with the Democratic Party. The International Republican Institute also receives government money, and is affiliated with some prominent Republicans.

The raids hit at least one German democracy-building group. The security forces also struck the Egyptian Budgetary and Human Rights Observatory, which studies the military and its spending. The officers also shut down an organization that argues for judicial independence.

Egyptian human rights groups are almost completely dependent on foreign financing because the hostility of the Mubarak government scared away Egyptian donors, and many received considerable support from the European Union as well as the United States.

But Egypt's military rulers began railing against the dangers of foreign financing to Egyptian sovereignty around the time last spring that the United States said it would allocate $65 million to help foster electoral democracy here. Although the United States is Egypt's most important benefactor, its policies in the region are also very unpopular here, making it an easy target.

Egyptian state news media have made it clear since the military-led government began investigating allegations of improper financing months ago that its principal target was money from the United States; in the most notable instance, a state-owned magazine greeted the new American ambassador, Anne W. Patterson, a few months ago with a cartoon cover depicting her holding wads of burning cash in the middle of Tahrir Square. "Ambassador from Hell," read the caption.

As new clashes have broken out between the military police and protesters challenging military rule — more than 80 have died since October — the generals have often warned that there are "hidden hands" trying to stir up trouble or "bring down the state." They have increasingly suggested that those hidden hands could be foreign-financed.

In a television interview last month, Maj. Gen. Mamdouh Shaheen suggested several times that the investigation into foreign financing of nongovernment organizations would shed light on the unnamed instigators who he said were behind the protests and clashes in the streets.

"There are hidden hands playing in the country," he said. "We tell the Egyptian people, and the Egyptian people are smart, that there are people who are trying to demolish the country."

Most human rights and democracy groups in Egypt already operate in a legal twilight because of Mubarak-era laws allowing only nongovernment organizations licensed by the government. Before and after his ouster, the Egyptian government has seldom granted such licenses to genuinely independent organizations.

"We are in the same gray zone everybody else is," said Heba Morayef, a researcher with Human Rights Watch here, a group that was not raided. "We are not licensed and we can be shut down and jailed and all of that, but we keep the authorities informed." After the revolution, she said, most such groups expected their lot to improve: "I don't think anybody expected there would be a new crackdown."

David D. Kirkpatrick reported from Cairo, and Steven Lee Myers from Washington. Mayy El Sheikh contributed reporting from Cairo.

Somalia: NUSOJ - Four Killed, Seven Wounded, 19 Arrested in 2011

Somalia: NUSOJ - Four Killed, Seven Wounded, 19 Arrested in 2011

Nairobi — The National Union of Somali Journalists (NUSOJ) today declares that the year 2011 was characterized by the worst possible perilous conditions in which journalists operate in Somalia, as journalists were deliberately singled out for cruel and unjust treatment.

The year, worse than the previous year 2010 in all respects of press freedom violations and abuse and crushing of fundamental rights of journalists, has been a period smeared with the blood of journalists. Media professionals have been victims of the totally unrestrained and autocratic use of the gun by security and public authorities.

"The conditions in which journalists work have reached new level of crisis in 2011. Journalists have increasingly become victims of threats, deliberate violence, unfounded criminal proceedings, wounding and even heartless murders," said Omar Faruk Osman, NUSOJ Secretary General.

NUSOJ systematically and thoroughly recorded in the past 12 months horrifying cases of killings, wounding, arrests, beatings, intimidation, harassment, judicial and persecutions of journalists. These frequent instances mostly took place in Mogadishu, Bossasso, Galkayo, Hargeisa and Berbera towns. Media houses were not spared from organized attacks.

In 2011, 4 journalists were murdered in Mogadishu alone, making it the only place where the utmost repulsive crimes against journalists were committed. A further 7 journalists were wounded, 5 in Mogadishu, while the remaining 2 were wounded in Bossasso and Galkayo.

19 journalists were arrested at whim, 96% without arrest warrant, detained without official charges. Media workers victimized in this period have had different careers in the media, be it reporter, newscaster, cameraman, editor or director. 7 media houses have been targeted with aggressive, repressive and violent actions.

Mogadishu was the city where most of the violations and other attacks against journalists and media houses were carried out, Hargeisa became second in terms of where cases of violations took place. Bossasso and Galkayo fell back to third equal in terms of the occurrence of violations, though journalists in Galkayo have felt more unsafe than any other journalist in Puntland regions.

While freedom of expression has been grossly violated, the corollary right of freedom of association has been under real threat. The leadership of NUSOJ has been intimidated from freely organizing and publicly promoting their positions on issues of violations, including mistreatment by authorities within the Transitional Federal Government (TFG) against the legitimate leadership and actions of the union. The leadership of the Somaliland Journalists Association (SOLJA) has been under intense pressure from the authorities in Hargeisa, culminating in the arbitrary arrest of its chairman.

Security forces under the command of political figures within the TFG are those most frequently responsible for violating these rights. Somaliland ministers and prosecutor have been responsible for pursuing criminal proceedings against journalists and the private print press, aided by arbitrary police arrests of journalists. Puntland authorities came third in terms of violations of fundamental rights of journalists and press freedom. Surprisingly, the Al-Shabaab group reduced its grip on journalists and committed fewer attacks than TFG forces, the Somaliland administration and Puntland authorities, due to changes in its political base, armed force and territorial space.

"Impunity is the silent enemy, fuelling increasing danger and number of perpetrations of violations of fundamental rights of journalists and press freedom. No matter if they commit murder or threaten a journalist, the perpetrator knows that they will walk away free", added Osman.

Gomaa Welcomes Cooperation With Somaliland

 Gomaa Welcomes Cooperation With Somaliland

Egypt's Mufti Ali Gomaa has welcomed cooperation with Somaliland to boost Sharia and justice research.

In a meeting with visiting Somaliland Presidential Affairs Minister Hirsi Ali Haji Hassan on Wednesday 28/12/2011, Gomaa said the Egyptian Ifta House is willing to contribute to promoting the moderate teachings of Islam in Somaliland.

He made it clear the Ifta House is ready to offer support in training and guidance to correct wrong ideas about Islam

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Somaliland not falling from grace

Somaliland not falling from grace

Last week the Kulmiye administration faced its worst political nightmare since the inauguration of President Ahmed Mohamed Mohamoud. Internal disputes and squabbling between the cabinet members became public and were irresponsibly leaked to the media.

It was stated in the leaks that the Minister of water and natural resources was caught red-handed in a corruption scandal. This was established to be a false allegation according to the auditor general's televised statement. That is not all; the minister responsible for the leaks to the press is still there and not fired. The cabinet meetings are expected to be strictly confidential and leak proof.

Most people saw this as dark page In Kulmiye administration, but in my humble opinion, this was a blessing in disguise for Somaliland. We all had the longest and most heated debate regarding government corruption and transparency. This debate was some times unpleasant to me and full of colorful and biased statements from all sides. No matter how disagreeable the debate was, it made us all to reflect on ways of sorting out what is wrong with our government and ways of getting it better. This is really very optimistic and heartening to all those who want to build a better and transparent Somaliland. We will not be able to drain the marshes of corruption unless we point our fingers on all those who we think are involved in corruption.

If you read back the various comments made in Somalilandpress on this subject you will clearly see how passionate Somalilanders are about their country. At times we loose the control of our tongues, but in point of fact it is the tongue that looses its allegiance, the heart and mind stay focused on one objective – a better Somaliland. In that debate, we revealed corruption loop-holes and people who are allegedly involved in this despicable act.

It will be cordial if the president looks at all those allegations and takes action where it is appropriate. The cabinet needs discipline and coherence. All ministers that are not ready to work hard for the people, but instead are there to serve their self interests must be expelled. The president himself needs to reassure Somalilanders that he is in command and stop being nice to all.

Despite our political difference we do not fall from grace, but find concrete solutions to our problems. That is why we proudly call ourselves Somalilanders.

Yusuf Dirir Ali

The SL President must Fire the Head of the Audit for Incompetency

The SL President must Fire the Head of the Audit for Incompetency

Recently Somaliland media reported a controversy on how the Minister of Energy, Water and Mining managed the revenue his ministry received for two contracts relating to the work this ministry is responsible for. According to these media reports there were two levels of irregularity on how the Minister handled the funds, which are as follows:

The minister did not follow the established government procedures after he collected the funds but managed the funds outside the government's revenue account

The minister misused the funds by treating the money as his own personal budget

These are serious allegations and the President correctly instructed the Head of the audit to investigate and sort out facts from fiction and accusations. I have listened to the audio press release by the Head of the audit and from that I have concluded the Head of the audit must be fired for INCOMPITENCY for the following reasons:

The Head of the audit confirmed that the funds were deposited in an account that is managed by the ministry outside the established centralized government revenue process. In effect the money did not go to the central government revenue account as required by all types of government revenue. This statement supports one of the accusations against the minister. In spite of this the auditor said in his statement that they funds were properly handled

He did not provide explanation on how $125,000 dollars were spent by the minister in the so called Capacity Building in order to clear the accusation that the minister misused the funds. The auditor simply made a statement saying the money was spent as per agreement. This is not good enough in view of the accusations. This is equally important because the ministry must have some budget in the first place for the so called Capacity Building expenses

From the above one can conclude that the auditor's statement is meaningless in view of these serious accusations and he must be fired for incompetency.

Ahmed Mohamed
Toronto (Brampton), Canada, Dec 28, 2011

As Usual The Contents Of This Article Are the Opinions Of The Author 

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

In Somaliland Even A Suspected Criminal Can be Rewarded for a Cabinet Post

In Somaliland Even A Suspected Criminal Can be Rewarded for a Cabinet Post

The demonstration against Siilanyo Government that took place in Gabiley on Friday came after  the visit of the Minister of Foreign Affairs in Gabiley. The press release he made on those arrested for the criminal case of Seemaal triggered this demonstration.

In his press release he openly said that there is no case against Abiib of the white hair. Is it not amazing that the foreign minister has taken the role of the Minster of interior, prosecutor general and judiciary which are mandated institutions that could proof the innocence of suspects…?

Another astonishing revelation made by the minister is that so far none of the criminals of both incidents in Seemaal and Dilla -Kalabaydh road is arrested. It is also shocking to know that the foreign minister was lobbying to secure a cabinet post for Abiib.

The Minister of foreign affairs is not alone in taking this position to defend the perpetrators to be brought to justice. He was preceded by a member of parliament Mr. Bashir Tukale who even accused the president.  Mr. Tukale said that What Abib (White of hair) knows the president also knows.

This was a very serious allegation against the President.  That means if Abib knows the people behind this crime then also president knows those people who slaughtered the innocent people Kalabayd-Borama road. If what Mr. Tukale claims is true then the president was in dilemma  to choose between two bitter options

1. To fire Tani and arrest Abiib.
2. Silence Abiib  and give him a cabinet post

But unfortunately it seems that the president is about to take the second option. I hope that the president and his government will take option two and continue to bring the criminals to the justice. It is also a high time for the for the house of Elders( Gurti ) to intervene and   question the government why it took so long  to bring the criminals in front of justice.

I also appeal to my kinsmen, all Samaroons  to be alert and prepare for the worst because it seems  that the rule of law is no more respected in the Banana Republic  and finally close my writing few lines from Shakespeare's  Julius Caesar.

Have patience, gentle friends, I must not read it;
It is not meet you know how Caesar loved you.
You are not wood, you are not stones, but men;
And, being men, bearing the will of Caesar,
It will inflame you, it will make you mad:

I am sure hearing Abib rewarded for the crime will make you  mad.

Warfa Abdi -  Jabuuti


Sunday, December 25, 2011

The Partition of Somalia & the Politics of Destruction

The Partition of Somalia & the Politics of Destruction

There have been some thought-provoking pieces recently on the balkanization or partitioning of Somalia. The best of these pieces, in my opinion, have been Professor Michael Weinstein's "Kenya's Premature Invasions of Southern Somalia Stalls Balkanization" published in Garowe Online (

Premature_Invasions_of_Southern_Somalia_Stalls_Balkanization.shtml) and Abdishakur Jowhar's "The End of Somalia: Scenario of Partition" published in Somalilandpress

( Professor Weinstein's piece is a methodical analysis of therealpolitik motivations underlying the efforts of Ethiopia and Kenya to establish statelets beholden to, and dependant upon, them within Somalia and the political trends within, and outside, Somalia supporting or opposed to such efforts. Mr. Jowhar's piece, on the other hand, is the anguished and visceral cry of opposition to these efforts, and the Somali political actors that are, wittingly or unwittingly, supporting them, that can only come from a Somali patriot who feels the dismemberment of his country as deeply as wounds on his body.

This is an important topic that needs to be addressed seriously and both Professor Weinstein and Mr. Jowhar are to be commended for raising it in their inimitable ways. However, it is necessary to define our terms in order to bring clarity and transparency to the discussion or debate. In this context, we have to ask which "Somalia" is in imminent danger of being partitioned or balkanized? Professor Weinstein's article is specifically concerned with the potential partition of south and central Somalia into fiefdoms and spheres of influence controlled by Kenya and Ethiopia respectively, thereby excluding Somaliland and Puntland from the central thrust of its discourse (in the interest of full disclosure, I should add that Professor Weinstein and I have exchanged correspondence on his piece). Mr. Jowhar's piece also seems to have south and central Somalia as its principal focus, in view of its exposition of what it terms "state-lets" in that territory and its concentration upon Kenya, Ethiopia, IGAD and UNPOS as the external actors militating and scheming to effect partition.

The second term that needs to be examined and defined is "partition". We all know that, in this context, partition means political division, however the fact is that the Somali people have been partitioned since the 1884/85 Berlin Conference at which the European Powers divided Africa between themselves. In the modern era, the Allied victory in World War II set the parameters of this division which has resulted in the partition of the Somali people between independent Djibouti, a resurgent Somaliland, the Somali state in Ethiopia (5th Province), the Northern Frontier District (NFD) of Kenya, and south/central Somalia, within which the autonomous region of Puntland has managed to avoid the anarchy and state collapse prevalent in the rest of the erstwhile UN Trust Territory administered by Italy. Thus, partition is not new to the Somali people; indeed it has been a feature of their political existence and reality since their first contact with European imperialism at the end of the 19th century. It's not even new that it is Ethiopia and Kenya that are scheming to partition Somali people since both of these countries insisted upon sovereignty over some of their Somali neighbours in 1959 and 1962 respectively. In both instances, Britain acceded to the wishes of the Ethiopian and Kenyan governments, and granted Haile Selassie's Ethiopia what is now termed the 5th Province in the first and Kenyatta's Kenya the NFD in 1962, in both cases against the express wishes of the people of those regions and contrary to the promises made by Britain to them.

Since the "Somalia" which is the focus of this discussion is but one part of the territories occupied by the Somali people and which forms the residual rump of the erstwhile Somali Republic established in 1960 by the un-ratified union between ex-British Somaliland and the ex-UN Trust Territory, and since partition has formed the political reality of the Somali people since the late 19th century, we are forced to ask, why is the present prospect of the partition of south/central Somalia so noteworthy and different? Both Professor Weinstein and Mr. Shakur come to the same answer but through different routes. The danger, as Professor Weinstein sees it, is that "The Somali people would be deprived of a political community and their political self-determination.", while Mr. Shakur sees Somalia reduced from nation to "a group of desperate wild tribes each entirely focused in a life and death struggle against the neighbouring tribe." Thus, both writers see the dangers of the current potential partition of south/central Somalia in terms of the eradication of Somali nationalism and political self-determination.

Now we have reached the crux of the matter. As with all analysis of Somali politics, we have to address the issue of Somali nationalism and the fission-fusion paradox that defines its very nature and essence. It is not necessary to go into a lengthy analysis of Somali nationalism (which I have undertaken under separate cover), but suffice it to say that since their first experience of European colonialism, the Somali people have responded with nationalist, religious and cultural resistance. Modern Somali nationalism dating back to the end of World War II was characterised by its pan-Somali and irredentist focus with the goal of uniting all the Somali people in one state – the Greater Somalia vision that was endorsed and championed unsuccessfully by Aneurin Bevan (Deputy Leader of the British Labour Party) prior to his death in 1960. This dream of Greater Somalia developed in the heady days of anti-colonial nationalism and the agitation it spawned, marks the zenith of the fusion strand of Somali nationalist ethos. Indeed, the creation of the Somali Republic in 1960 through the ill-fated union of British Somaliland and Italian-administered Somalia was but the first step in the realisation of this dream.

Unfortunately, there was a nightmare lurking within the pregnant promises of the dream of Somali unity, and this evil first surfaced in the unequal and oppressive terms of union exacted by the leaders of Italian-administered Somalia from their less experienced and more naïve brethren of British Somaliland. When the union constitution was put to them for ratification in 1961 in a national referendum, more than two thirds of the voting public in the ex-British Protectorate rejected it, while a similar majority in the ex-UN Trust Territory ratified it. Thus, did Somali nationalism and politics begin to swing from the fusion pole at one end of the spectrum towards the fission pole at the other. This manifestation of fission in Somali politics and nationalism reached its zenith during the final decade of the Siyad Barre dictatorship when political power became concentrated in the hands of only one sub-clan, with the inevitable result that the country fractured along clan lines and descended into the anarchic madness that continues to persist in south/central Somalia to this day.

The only part of the erstwhile Somali Republic that has managed to fashion a new model of politics, peaceful co-existence and underlying rationale for allegiance to a state across clan divisions is Somaliland, which has developed a functioning, democratic system of government rooted in local culture and traditions with a free and robust press. This system can be used as a useful and effective model by the people of south/central Somalia to establish a state, but it cannot be imposed upon them by any external actors, whether their intentions are benign or malign. The simple and inescapable fact is that the persistence of the fission tendency of Somali politics in south/central Somalia, and the attendant atomisation of society into vicious inter- and intra-clan rivalries, is a legacy of the Siyad Barre dictatorship that has been co-opted and exacerbated by warlords, self-appointed 'civil society leaders', Islamist militias and Diaspora carpet-baggers in search of easy money and self aggrandisement. It is the ugly and venal tribalism of this politics, and its manipulations by external actors, that Mr. Jowhar decries so emphatically and eloquently, and which Professor Weinstein de-constructs so methodically.

The fact that the people of south/central Somalia have reached the end of their patience with the anarchy that has blighted their lives for so long, and the self serving straw men masquerading as leaders that are maintaining it, is evidenced by the repeated, but unpublicised missions of tribal leaders from this territory to Somaliland requesting its assistance in facilitating genuine, Somali-sponsored and Somali-driven, national reconciliation. Supporting and facilitating genuine, grass-root efforts at national reconciliation among its brothers to the south is a moral, religious, humanitarian and fraternal duty that Somaliland must and will discharge. It has always been the conviction of many, including this author, that national reconciliation in south/central Somalia can be best achieved with the active support, sponsorship and mediation of Somaliland. The proposals of successive governments in Somaliland to play such role have been repeatedly rebuffed by both the international community and the self-appointed and self-serving leaders of south/central Somalia, the very architects of its misery! Quelle surprise, as the French would say!

The fact remains, however, that the evil which grips south/central Somalia is not partition, nor is it the designs of Kenya and Ethiopia to carve out spheres of influence within this territory. Rather, it is the inability and unwillingness of the social, religious and political leadership of the people of this territory to voice a vision of politics beyond narrow clan allegiance and partisanship, i.e. to transcend the fission principle of Somali politics. Neither Kenya nor Ethiopia is evil in pursuing its national interest vis-à-vis the anarchy and violence across its borders – this is called diplomacy and foreign policy. It is up to the people of south/central Somalia to pursue their own enlightened self interest and develop a modus operandi for peaceful co-existence, representative government rooted in their own culture and effective institutions. Unfortunately, the long suffering people of this territory are afflicted by the twin, linked plagues of a venal and self-serving leadership and a disinterested international community which has delegated responsibility for them to the best harbinger of inertia known to man – a bloated and equally self-serving bureaucracy.

In conclusion, I cannot but agree with Professor Weinstein and Mr. Jowhar that partition of south/central Somalia into 'spheres of influence' between Ethiopia and Kenya, and that this process has not only commenced, but is already quite advanced. However, I believe that this fact is not the disease, but rather one symptom of an underlying malaise which is destroying this territory politically, economically and socially. The disease is a corrupted polity characterised by venal politics and the introverted, fissile nationalism that breeds and sustains it. The root causes of the threat and reality of partition lies within. I can only conclude with a co-opting a line from Shakespeare's Julius Caesar "the fault dear Messrs Weinstein and Jowhar lies not in Kenya and Ethiopia but in ourselves". Until the politics of destruction is eradicated from Somalia, its continued misery is assured as is the potential and danger of partition.

Ahmed M.I. Egal

26 December 2011

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Somalia has been a chaotic and violent Hell for more than 20 years

Somalia has been a chaotic and violent Hell for more than 20 years, especially Mogadishu, the capital. Although there are many camps of hungry people, the city is showing signs of a return to normal life, thanks to the withdrawal of the Islamic extremist rebels of Al Shabaab and the presence of African Union peacekeeping forces.
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Somalia mogadishu 20 2011 12 22
Civilians are searched thoroughly before entering the AMISOM-run local hospital. Security remains tight throughout the city. (Nichole Sobecki/GlobalPost)

Can Somalia survive as a nation?

Transitional government challenged to assert control over the country.

MOGADISHU, Somalia — In the latest bout of political feuding Somalia's Speaker of Parliament was ousted Dec. 13.

Sharif Hassan Sheikh Aden, a wily politician and wealthy businessman who has himself engineered the downfall of numerous political challengers in the past, lost a vote of confidence conducted while he was abroad.

Political paralysis and ingrained corruption have left the backers of Somalia's Transitional Federal Government (TFG) frustrated even as they continue to fund the administration and its parliamentarians into a critical eight-month period due to end with a new constitution and elections in August 2012.

"One of the biggest challenges that we have faced is the frequent change of leadership. One transition after another, the leadership changing every other time," said Wafula Wamunyinyi, a senior Mogadishu-based official with the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM), summing up the feeling of many in the international community. "By the time [a leader] knows something and has a plan to execute, he is gone!"

The current prime minister, Abdiweli Mohamed Ali, is the third to be appointed under President Sheikh Sharif Ahmed since the start of 2009. Ali took office in June. His predecessor lasted eight months. The one before him managed a year-and-a-half.

The Islamist insurgents of Al Shabaab are fighting on three fronts — against AMISOM in the capital, Kenya in the south and Ethiopia in the west — but doubts about whether the TFG would be capable of governing even a peaceful country remain.

This month Ban Ki-moon became the first UN Secretary General to visit Mogadishu since 1993. It followed previous high-profile, and until now rare, visits from Turkey's prime minister, Britain's development minister and the UN's top humanitarian official.

Ban's presence was seen as a vote of confidence in the TFG and an encouragement for it to try harder and do more for Somalia's beleaguered people who receive next to nothing in the way of services from the government.

More from GlobalPost: Al Shabaab bans aid groups from areas it controls in Somalia

"I believe we are now at a critical juncture — a moment of fresh opportunities for the future of Somali people," said Ban. "On the political front, to bring a new measure of stability and possibilities to people's lives. On the military front, to consolidate gains. These gains should be sustainable. On the recovery front, to help break the cycle of famine, poverty once and for all."

Ban's optimistic tone was tempered with the warning, "We have a very limited window of opportunity." His visit and words went down well with government officials.

"Ban Ki-moon's visit was a true testament to the improvements we have made in the area of security," said Prime Minister Ali.

Ban announced that the UN Political Office for Somalia would be relocating to Mogadishu in January, a move that Ali welcomed. "It is high time. No more sitting in Nairobi. Every year billions of dollars are spent in the name of Somalis and we don't see it, it doesn't [leave] Nairobi," he said. "The presence of the international community is needed here in Somalia."

Britain's Prime Minister David Cameron is convening an international conference on Somalia in February that will address piracy, terrorism and the rebuilding of a country he described as "a failed state that directly threatens British interests" through kidnappings, hijackings and the radicalization of young Britons.

"Over the last 20 years Somalia became a danger to itself, to its neighbors, to the region and to the entire world. Now we are getting out of that," Ali insisted. "Somalia has the attention of the world but for the wrong reasons, so we have to seize the moment, now is an opportunity."

That opportunity is theirs to squander.

"Incompetent, corrupt and hobbled by weak leadership" is how the International Crisis Group described the TFG earlier this year (before Prime Minister Ali took charge) and analysts say little has changed.

Related: Ethiopian troops enter Somalia

Much criticism is leveled at the repeated, and failed, internationally-sponsored attempts to install centralized rule in a country where clan is king and politics are local. But Ali says his government has learned from past mistakes and welcomes local administrations, as long as they don't push for independence.

"Regional administrations are part of the devolution of power from the center to the periphery. [In 1991] Somalia was a centralized state, controlled from Mogadishu and once Mogadishu collapsed everywhere else collapsed also," he said.

Ali disagreed with some who describe the plethora of regional administrations, from the established states of Somaliland and Puntland, to prospective ones such as Jubaland in the south as proof that Somalia is balkanizing.

"Somalia is not disintegrating, we are coming back together," he said.

The government still has a long way to go and time is short before August when a new constitution should be in place and some form of elections held to pick a new government. Any extension beyond the August deadline was "untenable," Ban said.

Security has improved in Mogadishu, but nowhere else. The government's rule barely covers the capital, let alone the Shabaab-controlled hinterland.

There is, for now, a tentative peace in the city but clean water, basic education and health care all remain elusive and when these are provided it is thanks to the private sector or aid agencies, not the government.

"The institutions are not fully functional, we are struggling to rebuild them so they can support the communities, the people, provide basic services," said Wamunyinyi, the AMISOM official. "It is difficult and I cannot foresee in the near future having a fully functional government in place."

More from GlobalPost: Inside Somalia

Somalia: Government Soldier Murders a Civilian in Mogadishu

Somalia: Government Soldier Murders a Civilian in Mogadishu

Mogadishu — One of Somali government soldiers on Friday shot and killed an innocent civilian man in Mogadishu's Karan district, especially Jabuti village, witnesses said.

The solider was said to have opened fire on the man while he was at the village of Jabuti of Karan district, where TFG police forces have been conducting a security operation. Witnesses added that the soldier was among government forces during the crackdown on criminal elements among residents at the village, according to officials.

Residents confirmed to Shabelle media that the TFG soldier suspected the young boy to be Al-shabab sympathizers.

Soldiers were accused by locals of targeting local teenagers in the village of Jabuti in Mogadishu's Karan district during their crackdown.

No statement about the killing of the civilian was immediately available from the the officials of Transitional Federal Government TFG of somalia so far.

In Somalia, Fears Over U.S. Wire Transfer Block

In Somalia, Fears Over U.S. Wire Transfer Block

 Associated Press

MOGADISHU, Somalia -- Somali officials said Friday they are pleading with U.S. authorities to persuade banks to reconsider a decision to block money transfers from Minnesota's Somali community to relatives in this Horn of Africa nation, where anarchy has given safe haven to an Al Qaeda linked terror group.

A bank that handles the majority of money transfers from Minnesota to Somalia -- Sunrise Community Banks -- has said it will discontinue the service at the end of December over fears it could be at risk of violating government rules intended to clamp down on the financing of terror groups. Minnesota political leaders Rep. Keith Ellison and Sen.Al Franken, both Democrats, are seeking solutions.

Omar Jamal, first secretary of the Somali Mission to the United Nations, said in an email on Friday that he is working with U.S. politicians on the issue and is "close" to finding a resolution.

"To cut off the lifeline to millions of Somali refugees will lead to a colossal humanitarian crisis in Somalia," Jamal wrote.

An untold number of Somalis depend on small remittances -- perhaps $50 to $200 a month -- sent from family members in the U.S. Even that small amount of money goes a long way in Somalia, and can make the difference between a dignified life and homeless poverty.

"Adopting that decision will be catastrophe to the lives of millions of who depends on remittances," Abdiweli Mohamed Ali, Somalia's prime minister, said earlier this week.

Halima Osman, a mother of five in Somalia's impoverished capital, is among many worried about an even bleaker economic future. The 50-year-old Osman typically receives $150 a month from her son in Minneapolis, who is the family's only breadwinner.

"Without remittances we shall lead a new life of poverty and famine because there is no other alternative to get money from abroad," said Osman, who lives in a dilapidated five-room villa in Mogadishu.

Jamal said he is urging money transfer companies -- known as hawalas -- to make sure "money doesn't fall into the wrong hands."
The decision to end Somali remittances came weeks after two Minnesota women were convicted in October of conspiracy to provide support to al-Shabab, the most dangerous insurgent group in East Africa.

Evidence showed the women, who claimed they were sending money to charity, used the hawalas to send more than $8,600 to the terror group, which has ties to Al Qaeda. In another case, a Somali refugee in San Diego admitted this month that she sent money to the group.
Joe Witt, president and chief executive officer of the Minnesota Bankers Association, said banks are required to monitor their customers and report on certain types of activity. If they make a mistake or report something wrong, they face huge penalties.

"It's an incredible framework of rules and regulations, and if you do it wrong, it's absolutely a nightmare for the banks," Witt said.

Meanwhile, he said, money service businesses that wire funds internationally -- especially to places that might be unstable -- have been tagged as businesses that involve heightened security and compliance measures. While that doesn't mean every hawala is risky, he said a lot of banks have "made a determination that it's not a type of business they are comfortable in conducting."

Adan Hassan, spokesman for the Somali American Moneywiring Association and a manager at Kaah Express, a Minnesota-based hawala with locations in six other states, said the hawalas are subject to federal and state regulations, and he understands the regulations are necessary for national security and the well-being of the community. The hawalas must comply in order to keep their licenses.

Federal regulations require that hawalas ask for identification from anyone submitting over $3,000, Hassan said, though some companies require IDs for lower amounts as well. The hawalas collect the name, location, and phone number of the beneficiary, and the sender gives the hawala cash or a check or money order. The money is processed and the sender receives a receipt.

The recipient must present an ID to pick up the money on the other end, Hassan said.

Transfers to Somalia are not the only ones affected. Hassan said Kaah Express sends most of its transmissions to Kenya, which has the largest number of Somali refugees. Kaah Express also works with a well-established Ethiopian bank. He said those accounts are all affected, regardless of the destination of the money.

Humanitarian aid in a region beset by war and famine could be harmed by the banking decision, said a statement from Oxfam American and the American Refugee Committee. The group said Somalia's famine this year would have been far worse without remittances from the Somali community abroad.

"It is estimated that $100 million in remittances goes to Somalia from the U.S. every year. This is the worst time for this service to stop. Any gaps with remittance flows in the middle of the famine could be disastrous," Shannon Scribner, Oxfam America's Humanitarian Policy Manager, said.

"The U.S. government should give assurances to the bank that there will be no legal ramifications of providing this service to Somalis in need."

If the new banking rules are put in place, Somalis in Minnesota say they will find other ways to send money. One way is to send the remittances to another country, such as Kenya or Britain, and then have a third party pick up the money and re-wire it to Somalia.

Ali, the Somali prime minister, said his government is working to make sure the link between American banks and the Somalia hawala system continues.

"We have sent a memo to the U.S. authorities to call off that decision because that will cause Somalis to economical crisis," he said. "The monies sent from abroad are backbone for the lives of thousands."

Read more:

Friday, December 23, 2011


New York, Dec 23 2011  3:10PM
The United Nations agency tackling rural poverty is providing $100 million in financing for a programme to help poor households in Ethiopia gain access to financial services and diversify their income-generating activities.

The $50 million loan and $50 million grant from the International Fund for Agricultural Development (IFAD) is for the Rural Financial Intermediation Programme – Phase II (RUFIP II), according to a news release issued by the Rome-based agency.

Poor people living in Ethiopia's rural areas need access to credit on a regular basis so they can build up their assets and diversify their income-generating activities, the agency noted. Without any collateral, they often depend on moneylenders and pay exorbitant rates of interest.

Currently, only about 15 per cent of rural households have access to savings and credit services. The RUFIP II programme, which will be implemented nationwide, will build on the successes of the first phase, scaling up the delivery of financial services from 3.3 million poor rural households in 2012 to 6.9 million by the middle of 2019.

Some 3.6 million poor rural households living on less than $2 per day, of which nearly 50 per cent are women, are set to benefit from the programme – the 16th financed by IFAD in the country.

IFAD has invested about $13.7 billion in grants and low-interest loans to developing countries over the past three decades, empowering about 405 million people to break out of poverty and to create vibrant rural communities.



Alle mahaddii, kale hore dalkeena waxa ka dhacay doorasho xalaal oo xaq ah. Doorasho si nabad ah dadweynahu ugu muujiyeen hiyigooda siyaasadeed, hammigooda mustaqbal iyo hiigsigooda horumarineed. Waxa ay dhaliyeen isbedel wax weyn durtaba dalka ka qabtay. Waxay doorteen hoggaan u horseeda barwaaqo, cadaalad iyo dhisme bulsho. Waxa guulaystay Kulmiye iyo Madaxweyne Axmed Siilanyo. Waa guul iyo guul ay hanteen bulsho weynta Soomaliland.

Xiligan oo kale waxa yimaada daal kolka xawaare sanad iyo badh ah lagu jiray. Waa caadi oo siyaasaddu waa sida ciyaarta kubbadda oo mar walba ku jirimeysid duulaan. Daalkan waxuu ka dhashay KULMIYE iyo inta isbedelku ka dhabta ahaa oo ka gaabisay la socodka hoggaanka., iyagaa looga baahan yahay taageero, dheerigelin iyo inay ka ilaashaan kana daafacaan inta kolwalba u taagan dibu dhac iyo danno gaar ah.

Mid waan hubaa oo waa Madaxweyne Axmed inuu ka daacad yahay horumarinta iyo u hiilinta bulsho weynta Soomaliland. Waxa awood iyo xaraarad wax-qabad u noqonaysa inuu helo dareen dadweyne oo la raba isbedelka xaqqa ah, kagana dayrnaadaan duufaanada ay soo kicinayaan dibusocod iyo danayste jirjiroole ahi.

Marna ha joojin u darbanaanta ka midho-dhalinta guusha aynu kal hore gaadhnay. Waanu haynaa hoggaan u jeeda danta guud iyo dhismaha bulsho. Waxa jira duul ku mamay kharibaadda iyo majar-habaabinta masiirka ummadda. Ha ka daalin inaad kuwaas ka ilaaliso inay habaas iyo siigo indhaha kaga tuuraan hoggaanka dalka.

Guusha dadweynow adaa dhashay, waanad haysaa oo xilkaad u dhiibtay Madaxweyne Siilaanyo waa mid ay dhab ka tahay isbedel horusocod ee ha ka gabin, ha ka xidhiidh furan, u samir oo ogow inay kol walba jiraan cid diidan oo lid ku ah barnaamalka horumarineed eed doonayso. Ogow inayna dumida jirin meel banaani. Meeshaad banayso, waa  la buuxinayaa. Cilmiyan koobka aad biyaha ka madhisaa, ma banaana ee waxa buuxiya hawo. Sidoo kale ayeyna jirin siyaasadda meel madhani. Kooxaha ku tartamaaya hoggaanka dalku, waxay yihiin qaar kolba mid xagal daacaayo, waa kolka taageerayaashoodu gaabiyaan.

Waa hubaal inayu guul gaadhi doono Insha Allah, kolkaynu aynu si dhab ah taageeradeena ugu fidino Madaxweynaha, aynu noqono dar u taagan ka-midho-dhalinta guushii aynu gaadhan. Waana tan uu Madaxweyne Axmed u baahan yahay si aynu isu-hor-taagno kuwa jecel inaan hore loo socon.

Waa ruugcaddaagi soo rogaal celi. KULMIYE iyo Madaxweynahu waa ul iyo diirkeed. Kulmiye waa hooyadda xukuumadda. Fikir, taag iyo tamarba waa in la helaa isku-xidh iyo taageerada ay u baahan yihiin si ay u lisaan guushii aynu gaadhany.

Wax weyn  yaa la qabtay muddadan gaaban, waxa se jira dacaayado la buunbuuninaayo una baahan in nafsiyan dawladda laga daafaco, iyo in aan lagaga masuugin talo iyo fikir waxii wax dhisaaya.

Bulshow muuji in isbedelku kaa dhab yahay oo qof waliba ha la yimaado waajibkiisa. Ka guur danta gaarka ah ee gaaban, una guur danta guud iyo u hiilinta mustaqbal horumar dhaqaale, aqooneed iyo bulsho leh.

Mahad oo dhan Alle ayaa leh,

Axmed Xasan Carwo
La-taliyaha Madaxweynaha
ee Dhaqaalaha, Ganacsiga iyo Maalgashiga

Posted By Blogger to SAMOTALIS at 12/23/2011 03:11:00 PM

Thursday, December 22, 2011


New York, Dec 22 2011  6:10PM
The Security Council today extended by five months the mandate the United Nations peacekeeping force for the Abyei area, which is contested by South Sudan and Sudan, stressing that the mission's ability to do its work effectively will depend on the implementation by the two countries of earlier agreements.

The Council established the UN Interim Security Force for Abyei (UNISFA) on 27 June for an initial six months, following an outbreak of violence after Sudanese troops took control of the area, displacing tens of thousands of people in the weeks before South Sudan became an independent State after seceding from Sudan.

In today's <"">resolution, the Council demanded that both governments withdraw all remaining military and police personnel from the Abyei area immediately and without preconditions, and urgently finalize the establishment of the Abyei Area Administration and the Abyei Police Service, as agreed on 20 June.

The 15-member Council urged the two governments to make use of the Joint Political and Security Mechanism to resolve outstanding issues related to finalization of the Safe Demilitarized Border Zone, the resolution of disputed border areas, border demarcation, and the mapping of the border zone.

It also called on all Member States, particularly the two parties to the Abyei dispute, to ensure free, unhindered and quick movement to and from Abyei and throughout the Safe Demilitarized Border Zone of all UNISFA personnel, equipment and other supplies, including vehicles, aircraft and spare parts, which are for the exclusive use of the peacekeepers.

The resolution requested both governments to fulfil their commitment under their 2005 Comprehensive Peace Agreement to peacefully resolve the final status of Abyei.

The Council also urged all concerned parties to allow relief workers safe and unhindered access to civilians in need of assistance, in accordance with international humanitarian law. It requested the Secretary-General to ensure that effective human rights monitoring is carried out in Abyei and the results included in his reports to the Council.

Last week, the Council expanded UNISFA's mandate to include, among other tasks, assisting the two parties to abide by and implement their agreements on the demilitarization of Abyei.

Earlier this month, Under-Secretary-General for Peacekeeping Operations Hervé Ladsous told the Council that the security situation in Abyei remains fragile, with both South Sudan and Sudan failing to withdraw their armed forces as agreed in June.

Similarly, despite significant efforts by an African Union panel and Haile Menkerios, the Secretary-General's Special Envoy for Sudan and Southern Sudan, little progress has been made in establishing temporary administrative arrangements for Abyei, Mr. Ladsous said.



The Security Council today welcomed the progress made so far in implementing the agreement for a peaceful transition of power in Yemen, and called on the parties to ensure that they adhere to the timetable set out for the process.

A new Government of National Unity was sworn in earlier this month in Yemen after warring factions signed an agreement in November on a transitional settlement under which President Ali Abdullah Saleh agreed to hand over power to Vice President Abed Rabbo Mansour al-Hadi.

Yesterday, the Secretary General's Special Adviser for Yemen, Jamal Benomar, reported that the process is moving forward and the agreement is being implemented, with the Government already having taken action to restore peace and stability.

The Council, in a <"">statement read out to the press by Ambassador Vitaly Churkin of Russia, which holds the rotating presidency of the 15-member body for this month, stated that the political agreement should be implemented in "a transparent and timely manner, and in a spirit of inclusion and reconciliation."

The agreement followed months of deadly clashes between supporters and opponents of Mr. Saleh and his regime, part of the so-called Arab Spring movement that has swept the Middle East and North Africa this year.

The Council expected the parties "to continue to honour the timetable set out in the agreement, including the presidential elections on 21 February, the national dialogue, the constitutional review and the programme of reforms to tackle the profound security, humanitarian, and economic challenges that Yemen faces," the statement added.

It also urged all parties to reject violence, and reiterated that all those responsible for violence, human rights violations and abuses should be held accountable.

In addition, the Council emphasized the need for unimpeded humanitarian access to address the growing crisis in the country, where UN relief officials say large segments of the population are enduring chronic deprivation exacerbated by the breakdown of the delivery of essential social services as a result of civil unrest and widespread violence.


Anigoo ku hadlaaya magaca reer Xasan Cabdi Carwo iyo kan xaaskayga Amaal Cumar Carte waxaan tacsi u dirayaa ehelka, ubadka, tafiirta kale, gacalka, qaraabada, xigaalka, xito iyo asxaabta ay ayeeyo Khadija Aw Jamac,oo ah ( hooyada adeerkey Cawil Cabdi Carwo iyo eddooyinkey Canab iyo Qaali), iyo tafiirtooda meel kasta ooy joogaan.

Ayeeyo Khadija oo ahayd ruux aad u da'weyn oon marna ka qaldamin kana daalin tasbiixda, salaadda iyo cibaadada Alle oo dhan, waxaan ku xusuustaa dhowr bilood horteed oon arkay oon la yaabay hadalkeeda aan qaladka lahayn, xusuusteeda iyo maqalkeeda. Waana mid dadka wax yari helaan kolka ay gaadhaan da'daas mid aad uga yar.
Alle ha u naxariistee Ayeeyo Khadiija Aw Jaamac waxa lagu aasay magaalada Hargeysa, maanta oo khamiis ah 22/12/2011.

Marxuumad Khadiija oo ahayd ruux cibaado badan,naxariis badan, oo dad jecel, waxaan Illaahay uga baryayaa inuu u naxariisto oo uu janatal fardows ku abaal mariyo, ehel, asxaab iyo tafiirteedna, waxa inagu waajib ah samir, saamaxaad iyo duco.

Axmed Xasan Carwo


KENYA-SOMALIA: Refugees injured in Dadaab crackdown

KENYA-SOMALIA: Refugees injured in Dadaab crackdown

DADAAB, 22 December 2011 (IRIN) - Dozens of refugees have been injured in a security operation by police in the Dadaab refugee camps, northeastern Kenya, following six explosions since early November, one of which killed a policeman on 19 December.

 "We are being told to surrender the Al-Shabab-linked persons carrying out the attacks, yet... the police, who we expect to protect us, are instead proving dangerous to our lives," Isnino Ali Rage, chairman of the Dadaab refugee community, told IRIN on 21 December.

 Camp residents said the police arrested dozens of refugees and beat up others in the operation, which started in the afternoon of 20 December and extended into most of the next day. Residents said the police were looking for explosives.

 In Nairobi, police spokesman Eric Kiraithe told IRIN on 22 December that the objective of the operation was to weed out criminal elements in the camps "masquerading as people in need".

 "Nobody will create a safe haven for kidnappers, killers and makers of explosives; the operation will continue to ensure the camps are secure for the refugees, aid workers and police officers there," Kiraithe said.

 He said people linked to Somalia's insurgent group Al-Shabab were using Dadaab, which holds some 460,000 refugees, to plan attacks.

 "Such people hide in these camps, enjoying relief assistance while planning attacks; the last three explosions in the area have targeted the police," Kiraithe said. "The role of the police is to protect the refugees but if people among the refugees are targeting the police, then we must act. In the past, allegations of extortion and rape were made against the police; we have learnt that this was meant to curtail our policing activities and allow those planning attacks to do so; that is why we are subjecting them to intensive policing. We want to weed out the criminal elements among them."

 Regarding claims that the police used excessive force, Kiraithe said any professional misconduct by officers would be investigated.

 He said at least 90 police officers had been recently deployed in Dadaab "but we are increasing the numbers depending on the security needs on the ground".

 The explosion in which the policeman was killed and several others injured took place in Hagadera camp. The second explosion on 20 December occurred in the main market of Ifo camp and targeted a police vehicle, which narrowly escaped destruction.

 The refugees said the operation began soon after the Ifo market explosion, with officers breaking down doors to shops and houses in search of weapons and explosives. Business people reported heavy losses.

 "Almost all my property was destroyed, the computer and the big refrigerator; I am also missing hundreds of thousands of Kenyan shillings," Ali Deck, 25, a refugee and businessman in Ifo camp, told IRIN. "There are no banks in Dadaab, we keep all our money in our shops."

 Few refugees ventured out of their tents during the operation. Those who tried to take food to those who had been arrested earlier were also detained. The injured could not access hospitals. Health and aid workers stayed indoors, local residents said.

 Aden Hassan, 75, a resident of Ifo's Section C18, told IRIN his son was badly beaten up. "My son is mentally handicapped; he ran into the house when the police jumped over the fence but they pulled him outside and beat him mercilessly, they left him bleeding."

 The operation ended after a group of community leaders went to the local police station and held discussions with the officer in charge. One of the elders said the officer told them the operation would continue until the refugees surrendered the "evil ones" living among them.

 "There is nowhere to run; on one side, we are threatened by the fear of the unknown Al-Shabab, who are said to be in the camps, and on the other side we are being harassed by the police," Mama Nahwo Sirat, one of the elders at the police station, said. "I pray to God that we find a way out of this bad situation."

 UNHCR spokesperson Emmanuel Nyabera told IRIN on 21 December the agency was committed to ensuring Dadaab's civilian character was maintained.

 "We are concerned about security in Dadaab; and we are working with the government to ensure that we have access to the refugees," he said.

 After the recent explosions, aid worker movements and services have been restricted.


SOMALIA: Rape on the rise amid "climate of fear" in Mogadishu IDP camps

SOMALIA: Rape on the rise amid "climate of fear" in Mogadishu IDP camps

NAIROBI, 22 December 2011 (IRIN) - The number of reported rapes in camps for internally displaced people (IDPs) in Mogadishu, the Somali capital, has risen sharply, creating "a climate of fear", according to a civil society source.

 "We have had the problem of rape in the city but what we are witnessing now is on a scale never seen before," said Mama Hawo Haji, a women's rights activist. "For instance, in the last two days alone, we have taken 32 rape cases to the hospital; in the past four months we recorded 80 cases."

 The numbers could be higher, Haji said, as many women do not report rape, fearing that the perpetrators could return to hurt them.

 "In many cases, the perpetrators are government security forces who are supposed to protect the women; this has led to a climate of fear in the camps," she said.

 Haji said one of the reasons for the surge in rape cases was the fact that there were many more IDPs without protection in the city - "be it protection from the clan or the government".

 Mohamed Moge, a human rights activist, told IRIN the government was not in control of its own security forces. "The TFG [Transitional Federal Government] does not really have complete control over those it claims are its forces."

 He said the disorganization within the ranks of the TFG was "a big contributing factor to the overall insecurity, not only rape".

 A civil society activist, who requested anonymity, told IRIN that in Badbaado, one of the largest camps in the city, a baby was killed few days ago when men jumped over a fence in an attempt to rape the women. "One of them landed on the baby, who died instantly."

 Many of the IDPs fled their homes for Mogadishu because of drought and famine and violence in the south and central parts of the country in search of food and safety.

 Jooqey* arrived in Mogadishu in June seeking food for her family. In November, men in uniform attacked the IDP camp she was in and looted her food rations before raping her.

 "I had received the food that afternoon and they knew it; they took my food and honour," she said. "I want to go back home as soon as I can. I know who some of them are and cannot do anything."

 Jooqey said she was afraid to report the rapists to anyone. "I don't want to suffer again."

 Roar Bakke Sorensen, communications specialist with the UN Population Fund, told IRIN: "UNFPA is extremely worried about these allegations we hear almost daily now from Mogadishu. We are scaling up our activities... Last month we trained staff in the newly developed information management system, which is a tool that we use to collect and analyze data, so that we can target our response and give the survivors adequate assistance according to their human rights."

 Protection proposal

 Abdullahi Shirwa, head of Somalia's National Disaster Management Agency, told IRIN his organization had forwarded a proposal to the cabinet to protect all IDPs.

 "We proposed the creation of a special unit to protect the camps; we also proposed that any member of security forces or outside who rapes should be arrested and charged quickly and given tough sentences," Shirwa said.

 He said his agency was waiting for the cabinet to act on the proposal - "I hope we will get a positive response soon."

 However, Haji said rape was on increase yet the government was not addressing it and "giving the attention it deserves. They [government] seem busy fighting each other instead of protecting the public."

 She said women's groups were raising awareness of the issue and would continue to do so "until someone listens to us. We will continue shouting from the rooftops until rape stops."

 Calling on Somali men to join women in stopping the menace, Haji said: "I want all Somali men to remember that their mother is a woman, their daughter is a woman, their sister is a woman and their wife is a woman. How would they feel if any of them was raped? I want them to feel angry whenever a woman is raped."

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

UN staff’s performance in Somalia constitute a crime Send to a friend

UN staff's performance in Somalia constitute a crime Send to a friend

Rasna Warah

One of the most frequent complaints I heard during my recent visit to Mogadishu was the lack of physical presence of United Nations staff in this war-torn city.This sounded very odd to me considering that the UN declared a famine of "biblical proportions" in Somalia in July this year, and has been raising millions of dollars to save Somalis from starvation since.

In fact, the UN has claimed to have successfully distributed food aid in Mogadishu. So why is there so little UN presence there?

I certainly didn't see any, and I was in the heart of Mogadishu during my four-day stay there. I hardly saw any UN cars in the city, and very few foreign aid workers.The only foreigners whose presence could be seen and felt was that of Turks, whose government is actively engaged in rebuilding Mogadishu, and the African Union soldiers who are helping rid the city of the dreaded Al-Shabaab.

I had heard from various sources that most of the food aid that comes through Mogadishu's port ends up in private hands because there is no effective monitoring of how and where it is distributed.

The mayor of Mogadishu, Mohamoud Nur, complained that there was no control over the aid that comes through the port because the local NGOs that collect and distribute it are not accountable to anyone. This had led to theft of food and other aid.

So I went to the port to see for myself, and sure enough, I saw Unicef bags being offloaded onto a ramshackle truck that had no UN logo on it and no UN staff was present to oversee the operation.I checked to see if there was a WFP office at the port (you'd think there would be, considering that millions of dollars of food aid that comes through the port) but could not find any.
Huge allowances

Recent reports indicate that a cartel of local business tycoons control the food aid business in Somalia through shady NGOs, and that the UN is often complicit in these transactions.Recently, a reliable source told me that a UN agency that has received millions of euros from a leading Western donor to clean up Mogadishu's streets was using one of the NGOs implicated in the food aid scandal to manage the clean-up operation.

It seems everyone is profiting from the chaos in Somalia. Somali analysts I have spoken to tell me that UN staff based in Nairobi would like Somalia to remain unstable so that they can maintain their luxurious and relatively safe lifestyles in Kenya's capital.

Indeed, almost all bilateral and multilateral donor agencies have their Somalia offices based in Nairobi. Almost none have a functioning office in Mogadishu.This means that much of the donor money given to UN and other organisations is spent in Nairobi, not in Mogadishu, where it is needed more.

One senior European Union official admitted to me recently that the UN had probably slowed down Somalia's recovery and that "if there is peace in Somalia, many UN staff will not retain their positions in Nairobi".

UN staff are quick to point out that the UN policy is to evacuate international staff when things in a country get nasty.However, international staff are paid huge hardship allowances so they can survive under adverse conditions. Why is it that they are the first to leave when they are needed the most?

Many books have been written about the UN's failure in countries such as Rwanda – where even Kofi Annan proved ineffective when he was in charge of the UN's peacekeeping operations.

The genocide in Rwanda and the turmoil in Somalia stand as testaments to the UN's complicity in crimes against humanity.

One Mogadishu resident told me the UN is quick to run away from a crisis but is also very good at creating it. "First they said there the rains had failed and they needed aid for famine victims," he said."Then the rains came, but even that became a problem. They said the rains brought malaria, and so Somalia needed more aid."

When will this never-ending cycle of chaos end? It's hard to tell, but I hope the African Union soldiers will show the UN a thing or two about how to bring about real peace and development.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011



The head of the United Nations agency charged with defending press freedom today condemned the murder of a Somali television journalist in Mogadishu.

Abdisalam Sheikh Hasan was shot in the head as he left his office at Horn Cable TV in the Somali capital. He was transported to the hospital where he later died.

 "Securing safer working conditions must be made into a priority in Somalia's effort to establish democracy and rule of law," <"">said Irina Bokova, the Director-General of the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).

"I therefore call on the transitional government to investigate this crime against a journalist and against society as a whole," Ms. Bokova added.

According to the National Union of Somali Journalists, Sheikh Hasan is the third Somali journalist killed in Mogadishu this year.

SOMALIA: Kismayo IDPs face hunger, drug shortages

SOMALIA: Kismayo IDPs face hunger, drug shortages

NAIROBI, 20 December 2011 (IRIN) - The plight of internally displaced people (IDPs) in Somalia's southern port city of Kismayo, controlled by Al-Shabab insurgents, has deteriorated, with thousands facing a food crisis after supply routes were blocked, and drug shortages as patient numbers increase, locals said.

 "We are extremely concerned about what is happening in Kismayo; Al-Shabab has blocked any attempt to bring supplies by road while the bombing of the airport and the near-closure of the port has contributed to the severe shortage of food in the city," Abdullahi Shirwa, head of Somalia's National Disaster Management Agency, told IRIN on 20 December.

 The insurgents took control of the city in 2009, forcing many aid agencies to withdraw, thus cutting assistance to IDPs and other vulnerable people.

 Kismayo residents told IRIN on 20 December the IDPs were not the only ones facing a food crisis.

 "We are now seeing long-time residents who are no better off than the IDPs," Mooge Muraadsade, a resident, said. "Many of us depended on work and trade and both are dwindling here."

 Al-Shabab controls most of southern Somalia.

 Muraadsade said trade through Kismayo port had reduced to a trickle and many businesses that previously depended on the port's activity had shut down.

 "Not as many ships as a year ago are coming and the current fighting with Kenyan forces is not helping," Muraadsade said.

 The Kenyan Defence Force (KDF) entered southern Somalia in October to try to neutralize Al-Shabab, hampering humanitarian access to some parts of the region, most of which was drought-stricken.

 A local journalist, who requested anonymity, told IRIN more IDPs continued to arrive in Kismayo daily.

 "We had the long-term IDPs [from the 1990s]; those who came at the height of drought [mid-2011] and now those who are running from the fighting between the government of Kenya forces, the TFG [Transitional Federal Government] and Al-Shabab."

 Desperate for aid

 The journalist said the displaced were cramped in dozens of camps. "The real problem is that aid agencies have no access to these people because Al-Shabab won't let them," he said, adding that Kismayo, "formerly a thriving business and trade centre, is dying. Sometimes I honestly cannot tell who is an IDP or a resident. Some residents are as badly off as the displaced."

 Mohamed*, an IDP from the town of Jilib, 180km west of Kismayo, said: "I left because the fighting had reached us and Kismayo was closer than Mogadishu."

 He said in the two months he had been in Kismayo, he and his family had not received any help from any agency. "We beg and depend on what other people give us."

 A medical worker at the Kismayo General Hospital told IRIN they were receiving up to 10 people a day suffering from acute watery diarrhoea (AWD) or malnourishment.

 "We are getting many children who are so malnourished and they are mainly from the IDP camps," he said.

 He said the hospital was supported by Somalis in the diaspora but the last time they had received any drugs was two months ago and they were running out.

 On any given day of the week, two or three people died at the hospital, most from hunger-related diseases, he added.

 What his patients needed most was "immediate emergency aid such as life-saving drugs for malaria, chicken pox and supplementary food for the malnourished".

 The Kismayo journalist told IRIN that Al-Shabab was becoming more strict and refusing to allow "even local aid agencies to operate freely; they have become even more paranoid after the Kenyan incursion".

 In November, Al-Shabab banned 16 aid organizations, including several UN agencies, from operating in areas under its control, accusing them of "illicit activities and misconduct".


Monday, December 19, 2011


New York, Dec 19 2011  1:10PM
A joint delegation of the United Nations, the African Union and a regional organization has urged Somalia's transitional institutions to quickly resolve a political stand-off triggered by last week's passing by Parliament of a vote of no-confidence against the Speaker, Sharif Hassan Sheikh Aden.

"We appeal for moderation to the leadership of the Transitional Federal Institutions, parliamentarians and to all stakeholders [to] … avoid any statement or action that could exacerbate the already tense situation and further aggravate the crisis," said a statement by the delegation.

The joint mission that travelled to Somalia to meet with the country's leadership on Saturday, comprised Christian Manahl, the UN Secretary-General's Deputy Special Representative for Somalia; Boubacar Diarra, the Special Representative of the Chairperson of the African Union; and Kipruto arap Kirwa, the facilitator for Somalia for the regional Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD).

It conveyed the serious concern of the international community over the political crisis to the leaders, stressing that the stalemate could have an adverse impact on the implementation of the roadmap to restore peace and stability in Somalia, which has lacked a fully-functioning government and been wracked by factional warfare since 1991.

The delegation reiterated the determination of the international community to act against political moves aimed at derailing the peace process.

It urged Somalia's Transitional Federal Institutions (TFIs) to act in the spirit of the Kampala Accord, the pact signed in the in the Ugandan capital in June under which the terms of the President and the Speaker were extended for a year, ending an impasse over the transition period.

"We acknowledge the wish of the parliamentarians to discuss the Roadmap in the TFP [Transitional Federal Parliament], following their previous endorsement of the Kampala Accord, and the intention of the Transitional Federal Government (TFG) to present the Roadmap to the TFP for deliberation and approval; we acknowledge that this should happen as soon as the present crisis is resolved," the mission said.

Members of the delegation encouraged continued consultations among Somalia's top leadership to resolve the current crisis in accordance with the Transitional Federal Charter and previous political agreements.

In a related development, the UN Political Office for Somalia (UNPOS) today announced that a three-day high-level Conference on the Constitution will take place in the city of Garowe in the semi-autonomous region of Puntland beginning on Wednesday. The decision was made following consultations with the TFIs, according to the UNPOS <"">press release.

Sunday, December 18, 2011



Waxa axaddii bisha December ahayd todoba iyo toban 2011 magaalada Bristol ku qabsoomay shirweyne ay isagu yimaadeen dhamaan guddida fulinta iyo guddiyada laamaha xisbiga Kulmiye ku leehaya wadankan UK iyo waliba ragga iyo dumarka bud dhigga u ah xisbiga Kulmiye UK. Waxaa kale oo shirkaa ka soo qayb galay madax ka tirsan xukuumadda Somaliland oo ay ka mid ahaayeen; , Lataliaya Madaxweynaha ee arimaha Dhaqaalaha, Ganacsiga iyo Maalgashiga Mudane  Axmed Xasan Carwo, Lataliyaha madaxweyne kuxigeenka JSL Cismaan Saciid Jaamac, Badhasaabka gobalka maroodi jeex Axmed Cumar Xaaji C/llaahi ( Xamarje ) Agaasimaha guud ee wasaaradda dibudejinta Axmed Cilmi Barre.

Waxaa shirka aayado quraan ah iyo wacyi diiniya ku furay Axmed Faarax Cadarre ( Gees ) oo kana mid aha gudida fulinta ee kulmiye UK, intaa ka dibna waxaa shirka qudbad soo dhaweyn iyo mahadnaq isagu jirta ka jeediyey gudoomiyaha iyo gudoomiye ku xigeenka laanta Bristol Xuseen Axmed Caydiid iyo Max'd Xaashi Bacado. Xasan Cali Weyd oo ahaa gudoomiyaha qabanqaabada shirkan, ayaa isaguna halkaa ka soo jeediyey qudbad dheer oo uu kaga warramayo sababihii dheliyey shirkan iyo ujeedada laga leeyahay. Xasan Cali Weyd wuxuu sheegay, in tan iyo mudadii uu xisbigu guusha laxaadka leh ka soo hooyey doorashadii uu ku guulaystay madaxwyne Axmed Maxamed Maxamuud ( Siilaano ) aanu xisbigu isagu iman shirarkiisii joogtada haa iyo hawl maalmeedkii xisbiga, sidaa la ajligeedna ay shirkan u qabteen, sidii loo dar-dar gelin lahaa hawlaha xisbiga ee UK.

Kolkii ay soo dhammaatay warbixinadii Laamaha Kulmiye, garabka haweenka iyo dhalinyaraddu ayaa loo galay xog warankii madaxda dalka ka timid. Waxaa hormood u ahaa oo hadalka qaatay La-taliyaha Madaxweynaha ee arrimaha Dhaqaalaha, Ganacsiga  iyo Maalgashiga, Mudane Axmed Xasan Carwo. Axmed hadal dheer oo mahadnaq, warbixin qaabka dhismaha xukuumadda iyo kaalinta libaax ee ay kaga jiraan reer Kulmiye iyo dowrka looga baahan yahay isku xidhka xisbiga iyo xukuumadda oon kala maarmin ,.."Xukuumadda waxa dhalay xisbiga waxayna ku shaqaysaa barnaamajka xisbiga..sidaas darteed waxa loo baahan yahay in leys barbar taago oo weliba lagu toosiyo barnaamajka xisbiga...waa inaan la noqon sidii UDUB ayna wax talo iyo toosin ah ku lahayn xukuumadda ee waa inay jirtaa wada shaqayn iyo xisaabtan leysku qiimeeyo barnaamajkii leynagu doortay oo berri ka maalin  ummaddu inagula xisaabtami...guusha xukuumaddu waa guusha xisbiga...masiirka iyo mustaqbalka  xisbigu waxuu si toos ah ugu xidhan yahay waxqabadka xukuumadda..." ayuu Axmed Carwo yidhi

Waxa iyana mid mid uga hadalay madaxdii kale oo dhammaan ku nuuxnuuxsaday dowrka xisbiga iyo waxqabadka xukuumadda. Waxaana mahadnaq ballaadhan loo soo jeediyey Guddiga Bristol ee shirka soo qabatay, iyo waxqabadkii Guddiga Fulinta UK, iyadoo si gaar ah loogu mahadnaqay Guddoomiyaha Guddiga Ibraahim Dakhare.

Qudbadahaa madaxda ka dib waxaa la guda galay ajandihii shirka, kaasoo qodobka ugu weyni uu ahaa sidii loo qaban lahaa shirweynihii xisbiga Kulmiye, kaasoo labadii sannaba mar lagu soo doorto gudida fulinta ee Kulmiye UK.
Dood dheer iyo falanqayn ka dib waxaa laysku raacay in madashan laga xulo, xubno soo magacaaba gudida qaban-qaabada shirweynaha Kulmiye Uk, waxaana halkaa lagu soo xulay 21 xubnood oo noqon doona gudida qaban qaabada shirweynaha xisbiga Kulmiye ee Uk, shirkaasoo ku qabsoomi doona haddii Eebe raali ka noqdo mudo sodon dharaarood ah oo ka bilaabmaya marka ugu horaysa ee gudidaasi isu timaado. Waxaana xilka isku keenidda iyo isku xidhka guddiga qabanqaabada loo xilsaaray Guddoomiyaha Guddiga Fulinta iyo ku xigeenkiisa. Waxaana la gartay in Guddiga Fulintu hawshooda sii hayaan tan iyo inta laga dooran doono Guddi kale oo xilka kala wareegta Shirweynha soo socda  kolkuu qabsoomo. Waxaana goáanka golaha ka dhexakhriyey, shirkana soo xidhay Guddomiyaha Guddiga Fulinta UK Kulmiye Mud. Ibraahim Nuux (Dakhare).

Mohamed Haragwaafi