Wednesday September 11, 2019
Rescued migrants sit on a coast about 100 kilometers (60 miles) east of Tripoli, Libya, July 25, 2019. The U.N. refugee agency and the International Rescue Committee say up to 150 may have perished at sea off the coast of Libya.
NAIROBI / LONDON – Hundreds of refugees trapped in Libyan detention centers will be evacuated to Rwanda as conflict rages in the north African nation, the United Nations said Tuesday.
Vincent Cochetel, special envoy for the central Mediterranean for the U.N. refugee agency (UNHCR), said 500 refugees would be evacuated to Rwanda in a deal signed with the small east African nation and the African Union.
“The agreement with Rwanda says the number can be increased from 500 if they are satisfied with how it works,” Cochetel told the Thomson Reuters Foundation in an interview ahead of the official U.N. announcement.
“It really depends on the response of the international community to make it work. But it means we have one more solution to the situation in Libya. It’s not a big fix, but it’s helpful.”
Jumping off point to Europe
Libya has become the main conduit for Africans fleeing war and poverty trying to reach Europe, since former leader Moammar Gadhafi was toppled in a NATO-backed uprising in 2011.
People smugglers have exploited the turmoil to send hundreds of thousands of migrants on dangerous journeys across the central Mediterranean although the number of crossings dropped sharply from 2017 amid an EU-backed push to block arrivals.
Many are picked up at sea by the EU-funded Libyan Coast Guard, which sends them back, often to be detained in squalid, overcrowded centers where they face beatings, rape and forced labor, according to aid workers and human rights groups.
The UNHCR has said there are about 4,700 people from countries including Eritrea, Somalia, Ethiopia and Sudan in Libya’s detention centers.
A July airstrike by opposition forces that killed dozens of detainees in a center in Tripoli has increased pressure on the world to find a safe haven for the refugees and migrants.
Under the deal, refugees who want to go will be airlifted to Rwanda and stay in a transit facility on the outskirts of Kigali.
Priority will be given to the most vulnerable, such as unaccompanied children, disabled and elderly people. Most of the refugees will be from countries in the Horn of Africa.
Cochetel said some evacuees may be resettled in third countries, while others will be helped to return to countries where they previous had asylum, or to their home countries if it is safe. Some may be permitted to stay in Rwanda, he added.
“Rwanda has said, ‘we’ll give them the space, we’ll give them the status, we’ll give them the residence permit. They will be legally residing in Rwanda as refugees,’” Cochetel said.
Rwanda to the rescue
Landlocked Rwanda is one of Africa’s most densely populated countries and already supports about 150,000 refugees from neighboring Democratic Republic of Congo and Burundi.
Cochetel said funding would mainly come from the European Union, but also from the African Union, which has received $20 million from Qatar to support the reintegration of African migrants and refugees.
Rwanda is the second African nation to provide temporary sanctuary to refugees and migrants stranded in Libya after Niger, which has taken about 2,900 since 2017.
Cochetel said such moves by African countries were positive because they demonstrated to Europe that there were “things happening” there.
Yet critics have accused the European Union of seeking to curb the number of migrants reaching its shores by outsourcing the crisis to poor African nations.
Some analysts have expressed fears that evacuees could end up staying in Rwanda for long periods awaiting resettlement in a European country.
“On one hand you could say that anything is better than being stuck in a Libyan detention center, so the fact that this gives refugees the opportunity to get out is positive,” said Jeffery Crisp, an expert on migration and refugee issues.
“But many of the refugees will be expecting resettlement in Europe, which can often take time — and you have to wonder if the EU is going to make these resettlement places available,” added Crisp, a research associate at Oxford University’s Refugee Studies Centre.
Rwandan and UNHCR officials said the aim was to remove people from danger and provide them with temporary safe shelter where they would be given options for the future.
“We didn’t sign an agreement with the EU. We signed an agreement with AU and UNHCR,” said Rwanda’s Foreign Minister Olivier Nduhungirehe.
“The refugees are in serious danger in Libya. It has been two years since the Rwandan president said that we are ready to contribute to find a solution by taking some of them. The UNHCR is also calling for other countries to take them.”
Monday September 2, 2019
A suicide car bomb blast targeted a security check point in Somalia’s capital Mogadishu Monday, leaving at least three people dead, four others wounded, officials said.
“The attack was a suicide bomb explosion which targeted our security checkpoint in ex-control Afgoye in Mogadishu. At least three people including police officials and one attacker were killed, and four others wounded”, Adan Yare Hassan, a police officer in Mogadishu, told Anadolu Agency via phone.
He added that the attackers attempted to overrun the checkpoint but security officials opened fire, killing an attacker.
Four people who were wounded in the attack were rushed to hospitals for treatment.
No group has yet claimed responsibility for the deadly attack.
Somalia bans direct flights to Kismayo Airport, Jubbaland
Mogadishu August 29, 20192:30 pm All planes flying to Kismayo Airport will first have to land in Aden Abdille International Airport in Modadishu, federal government of Somalia has announced.
The directive comes amid deteriorating relationship between Kenya and Somalia, with Nairobi accused of meddling in the internal affairs of Modadishu.
Last week, President Mohammed Farmaajo’s administration accused Kenya of imposing President Ahmed Madobe, the commander of Ras Kamboni Brigade, as president of Jubbaland region.
So divisive were the polls that Kenya Defense Forces blocked Ethiopian plane from landing at Kismayo Airport. Thereafter, the KDF team and Jubbaland authorities closed down the airport.
A staff member at Kismayo airport, who gave his name as Ismail, said the plane took off from Gode in southeastern Ethiopia and eventually landed in the Somali town of Baidoa.
It was not certain if the plane was civilian or military.”It wanted to land at Kismayo airport but was denied clearance because it did not send information in advance,” Ismail told Reuters by telephone.
The latest directive will affect Kenya, where most flights from Jomo Kenyatta International Airport end at Kismayo Airport in Jubbaland.
Federal government says it will require international and local flights going to and from Kismayo to stopover at Mogadishu’s Aden Adde Airport.
Despite closing the Airport located at Sector 6 of AMISOM forces territory, KDF and Madobe’s administration lifted the ban on Tuesday.
Modadishu administration has been waging a war against Madobe, who it accuses of collaborating with Kenya to action Somalia’s territorial integrity.
Besides the row over Jubbaland administration, Farmaajo’s administration accuse Kenya of using force to grab Indian Ocean maritime border.
Wednesday August 28, 2019
More than a quarter of a million people died in Somalia’s last famine, which ran from 2010 to 2013© AFP/File TONY KARUMBA
Kenya is urging the UN to list Al-Shabaab under the same sanctions as Al-Qaeda and the Islamic State, but foreign donors say the move could leave millions in drought-stricken Somalia without aid.
The proposed listing — which could take effect as soon as Thursday — comes at a critical time in Somalia, where 2.2 million people, or nearly 18 percent of the population, face the risk of severe hunger.
Al-Shabaab is already targeted under broader sanctions imposed by the United Nations on Somalia, which is heavily aid-dependent after three decades of conflict and economic ruin.
Right now, UN agencies and humanitarian organisations are exempt from these sanctions, which enables them to deliver urgent aid without prosecution when they venture into territory controlled by Al-Shabaab.
But Kenya wants to tighten the screws on the jihadist group after several deadly attacks on its soil, and the sanctions regime it proposes would remove that safeguard.
“A measure like this will have the effect of criminalising humanitarian aid,” Eric Schwartz, president of Refugees International, told AFP.
“Any measure that would impact the current provision of aid would have extremely serious and substantial implications.”
If no member state objects before August 29 the Al-Shabaab listing under Security Council resolution 1267 will take immediate effect.
Hundreds of millions of aid dollars for Somalia will then be thrown into doubt.
In some cases, foreign donors said they may need to freeze payments for up to a year as they consider how to comply with the new sanctions, said an aid source in New York liaising with the UN on the issue.
“We would be operating in a huge grey area. As humanitarian actors, we would have this huge dilemma of carrying on providing aid, or we stop altogether,” the official working for a large global charity told AFP on condition of anonymity.
Another concern is that banks, fearing repercussions, could limit financial services to humanitarian agencies working in Somalia — a process known as “de-risking” that makes it difficult to transfer money and fund programmes.
The looming deadline has sparked a flurry of lobbying at Security Council headquarters in New York.
Somalia© AFP/File AFP
Earlier this month, 20 former ambassadors, national security and humanitarian officials wrote to US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin and USAID administrator Mark Green urging them to reject the Kenyan proposal.
Their decision “could either help sustain critical and life-saving relief to Somalia, or exacerbate the dire humanitarian situation and puts hundreds of thousands if not millions of people at grave risk”, the August 7 letter warned.
“They (humanitarian groups) have worked carefully to develop systems to reach people while limiting aid diversion” to Al-Shabaab, it added.
Exemptions from sanctions are extremely rare, the International Peace Institute pointed out in a June paper.
Kenya sees Al-Shabaab as no different to extremist groups elsewhere and believes sanctions are a way to blunt their violence.
On July 13, after 26 people were killed in Somalia’s south, Kenyan Foreign Minister Monica Juma said “this attack was another reminder to the international community of the imperative” to list Al-Shabaab under resolution 1267.
The foreign ministry did not reply to queries from AFP before publication.
Al-Shabaab violence has surged in 2019 with atrocities in Somalia and Kenya, including an attack in Nairobi in January that left 21 people dead.
Kenya has applied considerable diplomatic leverage on its allies, notably lobbying the EU in May to list the Al-Shabaab as a “terrorism organisation”.
The timing could not be worse for Somalia, which is facing another hunger crisis after the rainy season failed this year.
Nearly 18 percent of the population faces severe hunger, the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has warned.
The country is prone to devastating, frequent droughts. A famine between October 2010 and April 2013 killed almost 258,000 people, more than half of them children under five.
Somalia has accused its larger neighbour of meddling that could worsen its domestic problems and have repercussions for regional stability.
Somalia’s envoy to the UN, Abukar Dahir Osman, told the Security Council on August 21 that impeding aid efforts “will play into the Shabaab’s narrative and self-image as a de-facto government in areas where state reach is limited”.
Kenya has borne the brunt of a string of attacks by Al-Shabaab — in January, 21 people were killed in a brazen assault on a hotel and office complex in Nairobi© AFP/File SIMON MAINA
He reiterated the government’s “condemnation of any interference in the internal affairs of Somalia.”
Kenya’s campaign on Al-Shabaab comes as it spars with Somalia on several diplomatic fronts including a battle over its marine borders, said Matt Bryden, director of Nairobi-based think tank Sahan.
“There’s a range of thorny issues between the two governments that have strained their relations to the breaking point, and I think Kenya’s move must be understood in that wider context,” he told AFP.
SOMALIA’S INTERNATIONAL PARTNERS ON JUBALAND’S ELECTORAL PROCESS
Mogadishu – With a view to promoting stability and preserving unity among the communities of Jubaland, Somalia’s international partners (Canada, Ethiopia, European Union, Finland, Germany, Italy, Kenya, Netherlands, Norway, Sweden, Turkey, Uganda, United Kingdom, United States, African Union Mission in Somalia [AMISOM], Intergovernmental Authority on Development [IGAD] and United Nations) have engaged all stakeholders in Jubaland to encourage them to reach agreement on a single electoral process that is credible, inclusive, fair and peaceful. We are concerned that in the absence of such agreement, the likelihood of instability and division within Jubaland is significantly increased.
Ahead of the planned events on 22 August 2019, we call on all stakeholders to avoid any actions that could cause violence. We welcome the efforts of AMISOM to create a secure environment in Jubaland, and encourage coordination between the forces on the ground. We urge all stakeholders to act with restraint, wisdom, and statesmanship.
Maintaining peace and stability in Jubaland is crucial not only for the people of this Federal Member State but also to enable further progress on Somalia’s national political, security, economic and development priorities.
* * * *
Thursday July 11, 2019
Rough terrain and impassable roads are reducing profits for small scale Somali coffee farmers in Puntland.
The farmers in the Al–Madow mountain range, stretching west from Bossaso to the northwest of Erigavo, are forced to use donkeys to transport their coffee beans to an accessible transit point, where they pay commercial lorries for onward transport to the northern port city of Bossaso.
Mukhtar Abdullahi Isse, who lives in Dadan village, has two plots measuring 2.5 hectares with 5,000 coffee trees. He inherited the farm from his parents and has been growing coffee for 18 years.
“This year we are hoping to get a good harvest as the area received adequate rainfall. After selling this produce, I expect to make $5,000–6,000 from each plot,” he said.
However, Mukhtar could be earning much more if transportation was more efficient.
He uses three donkeys to take his produce to Markad, the transit village, 35 km away.
“The mountain terrain is rough with narrow steep cliffs so we only load two 30 kg bags on to each donkey and we try to balance them to avoid them falling off,” he explained.
This year, Mukhtar has harvested 70 bags of coffee beans. It costs $8 per bag for the lorry transport to Bossaso. He has paid to send 20 bags so far to Bossaso but the vehicles are few and he is having to wait a long time to ship the rest.
Ismail Muse, another coffee farmer in Mayer, depends on two donkeys to carry his bags of coffee beans the 50 km from his farm to Markad. This season, he harvested 48 bags.
“There is no way through the mountains where my farm is located, so I have to use my donkeys to take the bags to the village for transportation to Bossaso,” he said.
Ismail told Radio Ergo that farmers sell one kg of coffee at $2 to middlemen in Bossaso, who resell it for $5 to consumers.
There are over 60 coffee farms in the villages in Lasqoray district that use Markad as the transit for transport to the main market in Bossaso, around 200km away.
Puntland’s State Minister for Agriculture, Abdirashid Ali Gelle, said the government planned to improve roads and transportation in the region.
“We are committed to constructing roads in those areas and that is one of our priorities. We want to encourage the farmers to increase their production to reduce imports,” he said
Thursday July 11, 2019
The Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Ahmed Isse Awad, met on Wednesday in London with the State Minister for Foreign and Commonwealth Office of the United Kingdom, Harriett Baldwin.
During the meeting, they discussed bilateral relations and means of developing strategic cooperation in various fields and enhancing efforts aimed at establishing security and stability in Somalia.
The discussion also dealt with the political, security and economic situation both regionally and internationally.
On Tuesday (9 July), he met with head of east Africa at the FCO, and special envoy for Red Sea – Horn of Africa at the FCO.
Thursday July 11, 2019
MOGADISHU (Xinhua) — Somalia and two international agencies on Thursday launched a program to boost education opportunities for children and youth impacted by ongoing crises in Somalia.
The initiative backed by the government, Education Cannot Wait and Development Relief Agency in Somalia (ADRA) will improve access to safe, quality education for children and youth affected by the multiple crises in the Horn of Africa nation.
Abdullahi Godah, minister of education, culture and higher education, said the government is committed to provide an equitable and inclusive education system that affords children left behind with access to free quality basic education.
“This will enhance their personal development and in the medium to long term contribute to Somalia’s development, socio-economic growth and global competitiveness,” Godah said in a joint statement issued in Mogadishu.
The program will see Education Cannot Wait, the global fund for education in emergencies and protracted crises, allocate 8.5 million U.S. dollars in seed funding to support the launch of the comprehensive multi-year education response.
With this catalytic grant, the organization called on additional donors to step up and fill the additional 58.8 million dollars required to reach over 402,000 Somali children and youth annually over the next three years.
Yasmine Sherif, director of Education Cannot Wait, said the program supports the efforts of government and member states to ensure that every girl and boy in Somalia accesses quality education in the midst of hardship.
“It is an opportunity for an entire generation to rise from crises. For too long they have suffered protracted crisis and dispossession. Time has come for them to enjoy their right to develop and grow through an adequate education in a protective learning environment. They deserve no less,” Sherif added.
The program’s activities will include: school rehabilitation to provide adequate safe learning space, supply of teacher learning material, promotion of girls’ enrolment & retention, support to community education committees to promote education delivery and the importance of protection and safeguarding, and strengthening policy development on education.
Luiz Camargo, ADRA’s country director in Somalia said investing in education is one of the best ways a country can lift people out of poverty, increase national economic growth and reduce the risk of conflict.
“Quality education in emergencies strengthens children’s resilience amidst adversity and supports their socio-emotional and cognitive development,” Camargo added.
Sunday June 16, 2019
Turkey on Saturday condemned terror attacks in the Somalian capital Mogadishu that killed 8 people.
“We received the news with deep sorrow that the terrorist attack perpetrated in Mogadishu, resulted in loss of many lives and left several others wounded,” the Turkish Foreign Ministry said in a statement.
“We strongly condemn this heinous attack, wish Allah’s mercy upon those who lost their lives, a speedy recovery to the wounded and extend our condolences to the brotherly people and Government of Somalia,” the statement read.
At least nine people were killed and more than 25 wounded early Saturday as a result of two separate car bomb attacks in Mogadishu.
The first attack targeted a security checkpoint near the parliament building and killed eight people. However, the second blast — on a main road leading to the airport — killed one person.
Mogadishu June 13, 2019 The African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) said it’s consulting with the Somali government and partners to start handing over military bases to local security forces as part of a transitional plan.
Francisco Madeira, special representative of the chairperson of the African Union Commission for Somalia, said the mission is now moving into critical stages of the implementation of the Somali Transition Plan of gradually transferring security responsibilities to Somali security forces.
“In the coming months, AMISOM in consultation with the Federal Government of Somalia and partners will be transferring Forward Operating Bases to the Somali security forces,” Madeira said in a statement issued on Wednesday evening. “This is in the spirit of the Somali Transitional Plan.”
Speaking during a hand-over ceremony of six specially-designed refrigerated containers, Madeira reiterated the critical importance of having a well-funded, well-resourced and adequately-supplied Somali security forces.
The AU mission donated the six containers to the Somali security forces to help enhance their capacity as they intensify operations to liberate the country from militants.
Madeira congratulated the Somali security forces for their role in liberating Bariire town in the Lower Shabelle region, saying AMISOM would continue to motivate and support the Somali security forces.
Four of the donated containers went to the Somali National Army and two were received by the Somali Police Force.
Al-Shabab extremists, who control large parts of Somalia’s southern and central regions, continue to carry out high-profile attacks in Mogadishu and elsewhere, targeting military bases manned by AU troops and Somali security forces.
Step down #Somalia’s Corrupt Prime Minister H.E. Hassan Ali Kheyre!
The Truth is that #Somalia’s extraordinarily and extremely failed Federal Prime Minister H.E. Hassan Ali Kheyre made and led #Somalia to claim the most corrupt country in the whole world for 2nd year as a Somali Prime Minister who has been illegally and unlawfully making even cabinet ministerial changes in regard to his own will without consultation with the Somali Federal Lower House and the Somali Federal Upper House “Somali Senate”.
After two year in power as Prime Minister, there is no Somali Shilling Currency in use, there is no Somali Judiciary Committee, there is no Somali Anti-Corruption Agency and practicing corruption of nepotism and clan favoritism skyrocketed at the Office of the Somali Prime Minister and the Office of the Somali Presidency while even the Speaker of the Somali Federal Lower House MP. Honorable Mohamed Mursal and the Chairman of the Somali Federal Upper House had publicly confirmed that they disagreed with how they would comply with the Somali Federal Constitution and devolution of constitutional powers and the public services which they should each provide to the Somali people at federal and semi-autonomous levels.
Addition to that, you, the Somali Federal Prime Minister H.E. Hassan Ali Kheyre, you publicly announced that your government paid the salaries of the Somali Armed Forces monthly while the Somali Federal President H.E. Mohamed Abdillahi Farmajo exposed your blunt lies and creating bogus speech to lure or hide the truth so, you can not longer cheat or say lies to the Somali people therefore; it is better for your to resign before you waster the remaining 1 and half years because you completely failed to lead #Somalia.
Tuesday April 23, 2019
Ronaldo, who joined Juventus for this season from Real Madrid, became the first player to win the English Premier League (with Manchester United), the Spanish league (with Madrid) and Serie A. (AP Photo/Jon Super, File)
OME (AP) — The breakthrough under Alex Ferguson at Manchester United. Then the coronation at Real Madrid. And now another title at Juventus.
If ever there was a need to emphasize Cristiano Ronaldo’s impact as a footballer, the five-time Ballon d’Or winner did it again this weekend by helping Juventus to the Serie A title in his first season in Italy.
In doing so, the 34-year-old Ronaldo became the first player in history to win league titles in the English Premier League (with United), the Spanish league (Madrid) and Serie A (Juventus).
“I’m very happy to have won in England, Spain and now the league title in Italy as well,” Ronaldo said. “It meant a lot to me and it means a lot to us as a team.”
Other players have won titles in three of the five major European leagues (England, Spain, Italy, Germany and France) but nobody had previously put together the combination of England, Spain and Italy.
David Beckham played in four of the top leagues but only won titles at United (six), Madrid (one) and Paris Saint-Germain (one), having failed to lift the Serie A trophy during his two loan spells at AC Milan.
Zlatan Ibrahimovic won four Serie A titles (three with Inter Milan and one with AC Milan), the Spanish league with Barcelona and four French championships with PSG.
Brazil fullback Maxwell was on many of those same teams as Ibrahimovic and also won in Italy, Spain and France.
Then there was Arjen Robben, who won the Premier League twice with Chelsea before adding a Spanish title at Real Madrid and seven Bundesliga trophies at Bayern Munich.
Another Dutchman who achieved the feat was Mark van Bommel, with titles with Barcelona, Bayern Munich (two) and AC Milan.
While Juventus also won the league in the seven seasons before Ronaldo’s arrival, there was no doubting his impact in Turin. With 19 goals and six assists in 27 Italian league matches this season, Ronaldo played a part in nearly 40 percent of Juventus’ goals.
So it came as no surprise when his dangerous cross from a sharp angle was redirected in by a defender as an own-goal for the winner in Juve’s 2-1 win over Fiorentina on Saturday — giving the Bianconeri more than the single point they needed to secure a record-extending eighth straight title with five rounds remaining.
It’s the sixth league title of Ronaldo’s career.
The first came as a 22-year-old at United, ending a four-year drought for Ferguson’s squad as Ronaldo scored 17 goals — three fewer than Didier Drogba’s league-best 20.
That was just a warmup for what came next.
In 2007-08, Ronaldo led the Premier League with 31 goals and helped United to the league title and the Champions League trophy.
Another Premier League title came the following season as Ronaldo finished second in the scoring charts with 18 goals, behind only Nicolas Anelka, who had 19 for Chelsea.
While Ronaldo won only two Spanish league championships in his nine seasons at Madrid, he also helped the team to four Champions League trophies — including three consecutive European titles over the last three seasons.
When Juventus acquired Ronaldo in a 100 million euro ($112 million) transfer last year, the expectation was that he would help end the club’s long chase for a Champions League trophy.
Ronaldo did his part by scoring a hat trick to overturn a first-leg deficit against Atletico Madrid in the opening knockout round and goals in both legs of the quarterfinals against Ajax but the Bianconeri were still eliminated by the Dutch club.
“Next year is a new page, the fans all want it and so do we,” Ronaldo said. “It is an important trophy, but it’s difficult to (win).”
A Champions League title with Juventus would enable Ronaldo to match another multiple nation and multiple team record — joining Clarence Seedorf as the only players to win the trophy with three different clubs.
Tuesday April 23, 2019
Three farmers were sleeping under a tree when they were fatally hit by US airstrikes near the rural town of Darusalam, Somalia, in November 2017, according to a new report by Amnesty International.
The farmers were al-Shabab terrorists — according to the United States Africa Command or AFRICOM, which leads US military operations in Somalia.
But Amnesty has argued that overly broad strike criteria are putting young Somali men — some who are farmers living in remote areas — at risk of being indiscriminately targeted by airstrikes.
Under a shroud of secrecy, US military counterterrorism operations in Somalia have surged under Trump administration, along with a lack of transparency in terms of civilian casualties.
The US has killed 800 terrorists and conducted 110 airstrikes in Somalia since June 2017, according to AFRICOM. Many are in the al-Shabab-controlled areas of Lower and Middle Shabelle region of the country.
The new report by Amnesty says the US military could be guilty of war crimes for killing civilians during airstrikes in Somalia. They documented 14 civilian casualties from just five airstrikes conducted between 2017 and 2018. These casualties were not reported by AFRICOM.
They denied any civilian deaths until April 5, when AFRICOM acknowledged at least two civilian casualties in an April 2018 strike after conducting an internal review last month.
“US Africa Command is committed to transparency in its reporting of civilian casualties. While believed to be an isolated occurrence, the reporting error is being addressed,” AFRICOM said in the statement.
In an executive order earlier this month, President Donald Trump revoked an Obama-era policy requiring the government to publish statistics on civilian casualties.
“The fact that [AFRICOM] says they are not killing civilians in these airstrikes needs to be questioned.” Abdullahi Hassan, researcher, Amnesty International.
“The fact that they say they are not killing civilians in these airstrikes needs to be questioned,” said Abdullahi Hassan, a researcher on Somalia at Amnesty International.
Analysts like Hassan worry that the increased airstrikes and lack of transparency about the civilian cost are having unintended consequences on the humanitarian and security situation in Somalia, exacerbating internal displacement and creating the conditions for radicalizing Somali youth.
Despite the rapidly increasing airstrikes, al-Shabab continues to orchestrate deadly attacks in the region.
Between March 21 and March 28, over 40 people were killed in nine explosions in Somalia’s capital of Mogadishu.
Amnesty has called on the US to investigate the claims, but the military has rejected their findings.
The report has brought intense scrutiny to the growing secrecy of US airstrikes in Somalia that have almost tripled since 2017, when President Donald Trump began rolling back Obama-era regulations on airstrikes that were created to protect civilians.
Airstrikes spur radicalization
Hours after the US airstrike in Darusalam killed three farmers, staged photos of the victims were uploaded onto a known pro-al-Shabab website.
While smartphones have long been banned in areas controlled by al-Shabab, pictures of civilians allegedly killed in airstrikes are shared on social media by the terrorist group, often accompanied by text decrying the deaths of Somalis by foreign actors.
This has worried some analysts, who expect the propaganda could be used as a tool for recruitment and radicalization in the future.
“Al-Shabab can use this grievance [of civilian deaths]. … If this continues, we can expect more radicalization,” Roselyn Omondi, associate director of research, Horn Institute, Nairobi, Kenya.
“Al-Shabab can use this grievance,” said Roselyn Omondi, the associate director of research at the Horn Institute in Nairobi. Omondi noted how al-Shabab often presents itself as defending Somalia against foreign intruders. “If this continues, we can expect more radicalization.”
imilarities have also been drawn to how US airstrikes in Iraq and Afghanistan were used by militant groups to radicalize and spread anti-American sentiments.
“It is in the interest of the terrorist group al-Shabab to untruthfully claim civilian casualties,” AFRICOM said in a press statement.
Abdihakim Bare Hassan says he is not surprised that al-Shabab is turning civilian casualties from US airstrikes into online propaganda. The 27-year-old Somali Kenyan works for the media company Eastleighwood, which uses media and art to counter youth radicalization in Kenya and Somalia.
Located in the predominantly Somali Eastleigh neighborhood in Nairobi, known as “Little Mogadishu,” the group trains youth who have been or are currently at risk of gang recruitment or extremist radicalization.
They receive referrals from police or local administrators who link the organization with youth identified as at-risk. Eastleighwood has worked with over 6,000 youth since the group started in 2011 — the same year Kenya entered Somalia.
Bare Hassan says that at the end of the day, civilian casualties from airstrikes pales in comparison to those caused by al-Shabab.
Between 2016 and 2017, the UN documented 4,585 civilians casualties in Somalia. Sixty percent were attributed to the terrorist group.
“Now they post dead bodies from US airstrikes?” Bare Hassan said incredulously. “What do you take them for? They kill hundreds of people every month.I don’t think air strikes will end this,” Abdihakim Bare Hassan, Eastleighwood, Nairobi, Kenya.
While Bare Hassan is hopeful in the US military and Somali government, he is skeptical that airstrikes alone will defeat the terrorist group. “I don’t think airstrikes will end this.”
In the past two decades, a combination of prolonged civil war, deadly terrorist attacks, and recurring drought in Somalia has led to over 2 million internally displaced people in the country. Researchers now note that foreign-led airstrikes, including those from Kenya, are now contributing to the problem.
“We are alarmed that the number of airstrikes in Somalia has sharply escalated this year. … More airstrikes and fighting mean more families will flee their homes, and more civilian lives will be at risk,” Norwegian Refugee Council statement.
“We are alarmed that the number of airstrikes in Somalia has sharply escalated this year,” said the Norwegian Refugee Council in a statement. “More airstrikes and fighting mean more families will flee their homes, and more civilian lives will be at risk.”
According to a United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees report from November 2017, aerial bombardment and ground fighting in Lower and Middle Shabelle regions caused more than 10,000 people to flee their homes.
That number has reached a four-year high, outnumbering those fleeing drought, according to the NRC.
Many of the people interviewed for the Amnesty report lived in Internally Displaced Persons, or IDP camps, and were displaced multiple times, including due to air strikes.
“They fled their villages, they fled their hamlets, they fled their farms. They decided to go to the IDP camps outside of Mogadishu because they think that’s safer,” Hassan said.
The Somali economy remains primarily agricultural, and livestock accounts for an estimated 40 percent of the country’s gross domestic product. While vicious cycles of drought and famine have plagued the country for years, the areas targeted by US airstrikes are some of the most fertile areas in the country.
Some researchers are concerned about the long-term impact of strikes on farming and food security. Especially since those killed are often the breadwinners for their families.
The United Nations has also recorded how foreign airstrikes have destroyed livestock and displaced pastoralists.
“Even the animals, the goats, the sheep, they are also dying because of the strikes,” said Abdiwahab Sheikh Abdisamad, a Horn of Africa analyst in Nairobi.
“…The farmers fear the air strikes. They can’t even cultivate because they are not sure what will happen if they go out to the fields,” Abdisamad said.
“These people are victimized twice. … They fear al-Shabab, and at the same time they fear the drone strikes,Somalis who flee to IDP camps have already faced a number of abuses.
“These people are victimized twice,” Hassan from Amnesty said. “They fear al-Shabab, and at the same time they fear the drone strikes.”
Amnesty sees AFRICOM’s admission of error as further proof of the need for more investigations into civilian casualties in US airstrikes in Somalia.
“Now they know that these kinds of mistakes were made by their staff,” Hassan said. “Now they need to take all the allegations seriously and investigate properly.”” Abdullahi Hassan, researcher, Amnesty International
Around 32,000 people displaced, as UN deputy envoy warns hostilities likely to continue ‘for some time’.
The United Nations needs to ramp up its humanitarian response in Libya as fighting around the capital, Tripoli is unlikely to stop soon, the UN’s deputy envoy to the country has said.’
The clashes, which have raised fears of a worsening conflict in Libya, began after the renegade commander of the self-styled Libyan National Army (LNA), Khalifa Haftar, ordered his forces to seize Tripoli from the UN-recognised rival Government of National Accord (GNA) on April 4.
Maria do Valle Ribeiro called for a lull in fighting on Monday but acknowledged aid partners need to be prepared for clashes to continue.
“We are likely to see a continuation of hostilities for some time to come,” she said at a press briefing in Tripoli. “For that we need to gear up and accelerate and increase our capacity to be able to respond.”
The UN and its humanitarian partners have reached some 21,000 people so far. In an appeal last week, the UN’s humanitarian affairs office (OCHA) asked for $10.2m to cover the aid response up to May 18.
With fighting into its third week, around 32,000 people have been displaced, according to the UN’s humanitarian agency.
“We’re also very concerned by the fact that displacement is continuing at an increasing rate every day,” Ribeiro told reporters.
Fighting continued overnight on Sunday around Libya’s capital as troops aligned to the UN-recognised government targeted Haftar’s forces.
Al Jazeera’s Mahmoud Abdelwahed, reporting from Tripoli, said forces loyal to the UN-recognised government “started a new move this [Monday] morning towards the locations of Haftar’s forces in and around the inactive Tripoli international airport on the southwestern part of the capital”.
“In Tripoli, artillery fire was heard clearly overnight [Sunday] and government sources say that they were using heavy weapons to target Haftar’s forces in the vicinity of the airport,” he said.
“Humming of warplanes was also heard overnight, but no air strikes were reported,” Abdelwahed added.
Haftar’s LNA said on Monday it would intensify an assault on Tripoli.
Forces loyal to Tripoli drove back the LNA in recent days in the southern suburb of Ain Zara, the main scene of the fighting, Reuters reporters visiting the area said, even though the LNA said it had launched air strikes on military sites in the capital.
LNA spokesman Ahmed Mismari denied there had been a retreat but said an advance by his forces had slowed because of the dense population in the areas where fighting was taking place. Fighting was under way on Monday for control of Ain Zara and Azizyia, two larger towns near Tripoli, and in the Abu Salim district, about seven kilometres (four miles) from Tripoli’s centre.
The death toll from this month’s fighting climbed to 254, including combatants and civilians, the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Sunday. At least 34 more people died in the past two days, WHO said, while 1,228 were wounded.
Fighting over Tripoli has spiked since the White House said President Donald Trump spoke to Haftar last Monday.
The disclosure of the call on Friday and a US statement that it “recognised Field Marshal Haftar’s significant role in fighting terrorism and securing Libya’s oil resources” has boosted the commander’s supporters and enraged his opponents.
Since launching his push, which many see as a power grab for Tripoli, Haftar’s forces have captured the districts of Gharyan and Qasr Bani Ghashir along with several smaller towns. They also seized the capital’s shuttered old airport.
Tuesday April 23, 2019
Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi stressed on Tuesday Egypt’s steadfast stance in support of Somalia’s unity and stability.
Sisi expressed Egypt’s desire to continue to enhance various aspects of bilateral cooperation between the two countries and to offer all support to the people of Somalia in their efforts to build the institutions of the state and establish security and stability.
These statements came on Tuesday during a meeting between President Sisi and his Somali counterpart President Mohammed Abdullah Mohammed ‘Farmajo’ in the presence of Egyptian Affairs Minister Sameh Shoukry and head of the General Intelligence Service Abbas Kamel.
The Egyptian presidential spokesman Bassam Rady, said that the Somali president expressed his appreciation for the historic relations between Egypt and his country, praising Egypt’s role in supporting Somalia and its support of efforts to achieve security and stability in the country.
The Somali president stressed his country’s keenness to continue coordinating and consulting with Egypt on various issues, praising Egypt’s hosting of the summit meetings on Sudan and Libya and Egypt’s active role in the African arena, especially in light of its current chairmanship of the African Union.
The Somali president also reviewed the latest developments in the internal situation in his country and the steps being taken by the central government to restore and consolidate security and stability in Somalia and overcome various challenges.
Tuesday April 23, 2019
President Farmajo (L) with Kenya’s President Uhuru Kenyatta (R) ahead of his swearing in Wednesday in the Somali capital, Mogadishu – Image: PSCU
On March 22, 2019, media reports indicated that a rather high profile visit by American government officials had taken place in Mogadishu. The US Envoy to Somalia Donald Yamamoto together with the commander of the US Africa Command (AFRICOM) General Thomas Waldhauser had held talks with Somalia Prime Minister Hassan Ali Khaire and senior military and government officials.
The talks bordered on security partnerships in the region with a particular emphasis on the US Africa Command’s interest in the development of the Danab Advanced Infantry Brigade in Somalia.
The brigade described, as the most advanced infantry units on Somalia will have five battalions and a brigade headquarters at Baledogle Military Airfield. The US officials observed that Somalia was critical to the security situation and the long-term stability of the East Africa region.
On the same day and unnoticed, the Arab League states made history in Switzerland after failing to vote against Israel as has been the practice for many years. Somalia abstained on a resolution on Israel’s occupation of the Golan Heights in Syria.
Somalia’s unprecedented abstention on draft resolution A/HRC/40/L4 titled ‘Human Rights in the occupied Syrian Golan’ pricked significant interest. The Somalia government was later to issue a statement reiterating “its firm position that the Golan Heights are Syrian territory illegally occupied by Israel. Any recognition of Israeli sovereignty over Golan is not only null and void and violates international law but increases tension in the Middle East and undermines peace, security and stability.”
The actions of the Somali diplomats at the United Nations meet led to the recalling of Ambassador Faduma Abdullahi back to Mogadishu and the firing of Abdullahi Dool for his personal remarks on twitter.
On April 9, the Somalia government led by Khaire approached the Bretton Woods institutions seeking for the cancellation of its debts estimated to be about five billion US dollars. Since the 1990s when war broke out, Somalia has never been able to review its borrowing with the two institutions of the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund.
During meetings attended by new World Bank President David Malpass and IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde, a senior World Bank official Kristalina Georgieva posted on her twitter handle, “an important meeting with Somali Prime Minister Hassan Ali Khaire. Your country is making great progress and we at the World Bank stand ready to support you and the people of Somalia at this crucial moment for the country.”
On the same day, the US National Security Advisor John Bolton met the Somalia Premier at the White House in a meeting also attended by the Norwegian Minister of International Development, Dag Inge Ulstein eliciting eyebrows in Kenya taking into consideration the various partners interested in the recently auctioned gas exploration blocks belonging to Kenya on the Indian Ocean.
It is worth recalling that in 2018, the US re-established its diplomatic relations with Somalia and at the same time extended by a year a presidential declaration of a national emergency on Somalia calling the Islamist insurgency that has plagued the country an “unusual and extraordinary threat to the United States.”
The US has committed to “bringing back its troops home” as it withdraws its forces from various hotspots in the world including Somalia, Syria and Afghanistan. The US Operational Forces has been embedded in the Somalia National Army in the fight against militant Al Shaabab through the Danab Advanced Infantry Brigade, a fight that is ‘supposed to protect and defend American interests in the East African region through her allies Kenya and Ethiopia.’
Shockingly when the United Nations sought to include and list Al Shabaab as a terrorist group under UNSC Resolution 1267, only China, Somalia, Djibouti, Ethiopia, Uganda and Burundi voted with Kenya while the United States and United Kingdom vehemently opposed the listing.
Terrorism is acknowledged as a global threat with al Qaeda, ISIL and their affiliates listed by the UN as such. Al Shabaab pledged its allegiance to al Qaeda in 2010 before the UN listed it in 2012.
At what point then did America decide to ‘protect her interests’ in the East African region that is constantly being bombarded by the Al Shabaab terror attacks? Why is it that Kenyans have never questioned through Parliament or the Head of State why the two respective ambassadors failed to support Kenya in such an important matter as war on terror?
Why should Kenya bear the brunt of terror? Who will then defend the territorial integrity of Kenya considering that some countries are attempting to do so? But, I deviate from the subject matter.
While the world has been watching some of these unrelated activities keenly, pundits are left wondering what Kenya thinks of the same especially coming after the Kenya military troops attached to AMISOM started withdrawing from their military base in March and headed back to the Kenya Somalia border as well as the largely unspoken concerns of the maritime case at the International Court of Justice scheduled to commence hearing in September.
Many are questioning what has suddenly led the Somalia Federal Government to seek financial and material assistance from other states at this particular time. Why is it that the Kenyan government has not stopped to tell Kenyans what it intends to do as the September date approaches as it did during the leaders of government had to stand before the International Court of Justice?
Are all these events part of normal diplomatic relations with little effect on Kenya? As Kenyans, we deserve answers from our leaders. How is it that events happening across the world that affect us directly and indirectly are not being discussed at the national platform?
The interests of Kenyans cannot be taken for granted by our leaders and other countries.
The anticipated withdrawal of troops from Somalia by the United States and Kenya is expected to trigger a flurry of activities keeping in mind that Somalis in the US have another eight months to go until March 17, 2020 to re-register to stay in the USA under the Temporary Protected Status (TPS) thus saving close to 500 families from deportation.
The 18 month-extension made in July 2018 by the US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) allows for voluntary return to Somalia or another country or deportation after the expiration of the extension.
Those that chose to stay are constantly reminded of their pending deportation while many others have opted to move closer home if the recent population explosion in East African countries is anything to go by.
Interestingly, the temporary status program has since the entry of the Donald Trump administration ended the stay in the US of citizens from El Salvador, Hondurus, Haiti, Nicargua and Sudan.
What does the TPS program mean for Kenya in particular? How will Kenya stem the flood of new settlers from the US and perhaps other countries that are implementing similar programs?
What ever happened to the closure of the Dadaab refugee camp? Is the State Department of Immigration willing to tell Kenyans how many foreigners it has registered? How does the government monitor activities at its points of entry while reassuring Kenyans of the protections of the interests of Kenya and Kenyans?
By Helen Benedict
Tuesday April 23, 2019
A refugee sits in an overcrowded camp on the Greek island of Samos, March 2019. (AP Photo / Angelos Tzortzinis)
When Leila, an elegant Afghan woman of 34, goes to bed, she squashes up beside her husband on the narrow bottom mattress of a bunk, while her teenage daughter and 11-year-old son share the bed above. Eighteen inches away, another family is crushed together on another bunk, and down the row stretch 20 more. These families are living in a metal shipping container, their only privacy the gray blankets they hang around their beds. To sleep, they must steel themselves for a night of itching caused by the bedbugs and scabies that have left welts all over their bodies.
In the daytime, matters are no easier. To shower, they must wait their turn for an hour or more among their 40 or so neighbors in the container. To eat, they must rise at 3 AM to wait in line until 9 in the morning for the juice box, bread, and fruit they each get for breakfast. To wash their clothes, they must make their way to one of the eight taps of cold water available to the 4,000 people living around them, many of whom never get to live in containers at all. Instead, they must make do with tents, while 1,000 more are forced to live outside the camp in the woods in pup-tents or hovels made of pinned-together blankets and tarps, with no electricity, water, or bathrooms.
Leila, who dresses in black abayas with lacy sleeves and bodices, was once a businesswoman and teacher who instructed devout women in marketable skills such as sewing and growing saffron. Now, she and her family are among the thousands of asylum seekers who have fled war, persecution, and torture only to become trapped on the island of Samos, the most overcrowded refugee camp in Greece. Samos has come to represent the cruelty of a deal between the European Union and Turkey that has left some 75,000 asylum seekers in limbo.
The deal, signed on March 20, 2016, was a response to the millions of refugees arriving in Turkey and Europe in 2015. It began with the bargain that every refugee arriving illegally on a Greek island would be exchanged for a Syrian refugee in Turkey; a bargain based, as Amnesty International put it at the time, on the “untrue, but willfully ignored, premise that Turkey is a safe country for refugees and asylum-seekers.” The deal also included a gift of 1.6 billion euros to Greece for keeping refugees out of the rest of Europe. The fate of that aid money, little of which has been seen by anybody working with refugees, is now under investigation by the EU anti-corruption agency in Brussels.
If the main goal behind the deal was to discourage refugees from crossing the sea, the strategy initially seemed to work; the number of new arrivals did drop. But by the summer of 2018, it was picking up again. Despite harsh winds and storms, this past winter saw a rise in people crossing the sea to Greece, with 2,652 arriving in January alone, 488 more than the January before. As of April 14 of this year, 9,233 asylum seekers had landed in Greece, 1,444 on Samos, and many more are expected to come as the weather warms. Just on March 19, the day before the third anniversary of the deal, two rubber boats were hauled to the island, one containing 62 people from Africa, the other 55 from Syria and Iraq. I found the boats lying on the seafront dock: long flaps of rubber, half inflated, filled with sodden sweaters, children’s shoes, inner tubes, soaked lifejackets, and the black plastic bags that had served as people’s suitcases.
The effects of the deal are particularly visible on Northern Aegean islands like Samos, because they lie so close to Turkey and attract the most refugees. Before the deal, people arriving here were moved to the mainland or Europe within a few days or weeks. But after the agreement, because it stipulated that asylum seekers could not leave an island until they had passed an interview to determine whether they could safely be sent back to Turkey and because Greece’s asylum service is underfunded and overwhelmed, many were forced to wait on the islands for months or even years. Furthermore, thousands have been kept on the islands even after passing that interview, because the Greek government would claim that there was no room on the mainland either. Currently this bottlenecking has trapped about 15,000 people on the islands.
Recently, the Greek government has been transferring more people off the islands to remote camps or hotels on the mainland to await their first interview. The waits for those interviews are growing longer—up to two years for most—and even if one passes that, more years of waiting lie ahead: first for the second interview to determine one’s asylum status, and then for further interviews if one was denied and then registered an appeal. Meanwhile, the Samos camp is as overcrowded as ever. For every boatload transferred to the mainland, just as many asylum seekers arrive.
“When we arrived here in December, there was no place to sleep, so we had to buy a tent with our own money and set up in the woods outside the camp,” Leila told me in Farsi, while another Afghan refugee translated. (Because Leila is awaiting asylum, she requested I change her name to protect her identity.) “I was too shocked by the conditions to even think about how cold or squashed I was, but I thought at least there would be rules and security. But there are no rules. People have fights in the camp and you see them bleeding, but no one does anything. Men drink and party all night, so it’s too loud to sleep. It was so frightening at night, we had to go to the toilet together, holding hands.”
As harrowing as these conditions are for everyone, they are especially dangerous for women, who make up 22 percent of the camp’s population and whose needs are often ignored. Men stand at 54 percent, the rest children.
“At night, we are afraid to go out,” said Zainab, a 23-year-old widow from Somalia dressed in a bright yellow hijab, while a refugee from Palestine translated her Arabic to English. (Zainab, too, asked me to disguise her real name.) “So we go to the bathroom before it is dark, then we go inside our tents and stay there till morning. For women here, the night becomes a prison.”
Zainab told me she’d had to leave her 4-year-old son in Somalia with her mother to escape being forcibly married to a member of the Al Shabab militant group. “I don’t even know if I am a widow,” she added. “My husband had to flee Al Shabab, or they would have killed him. He went to Libya two years ago. Nobody has heard from him since.” Her eyes filled with tears as she showed me her son’s picture. Zainab arrived on Samos five months ago, and will have to wait two years for the interview that will determine her asylum status; years in which her son will grow from a toddler to a boy without her.
She showed me the temporary ID card that all asylum seekers are given when they arrive on Samos. On it, under her name and birthdate, was the date of her next interview and a red stamp that means she is not allowed to leave the island.
“It is so dangerous for children in Somalia,” she continued, wiping away her tears. “I came here hoping to find safety, to make a life here and send for my son. But I can’t make any life here while I’m stuck in this camp. I feel crushed. I cry a lot to myself.”
Women who arrive here alone like Zainab are supposed to be given heightened vulnerability status and transferred to the mainland quickly. But in reality, many have no protection at all, aside from a refusal to go out after dark and a little padlock on the zipper of their tents.
Women also have to deal with sexual harassment and bullying. Because the camp toilets are clogged and foul, the floors caved in, the walls black with filth, those who live in tents need to use the toilets and showers in containers. Yet most of the containers are occupied only by men, many of whom won’t allow children or women in, while others charge money. One woman told me she caught a man spying on women as they washed. As a result of all this, women often avoid the bathrooms altogether, washing in basins instead, and using a system of plastic bags and buckets as toilets, or urinating into bottles.
“The rates of infection are very high because of how unsanitary the camp is,” Dr. Sophie Gedeon told me. Gedeon runs a small medical NGO called Med’Equali outside the camp, where four doctors and two nurses serve between 90 and 100 refugees per day. The camp has only one official doctor, two nurses, and no dentist. Many refugees told me of waiting hours to see the doctor, only to be sent away with an appointment to wait more hours on another day.
Fear of sexual violence also plagues women in camp, which is especially traumatic for survivors of rape and torture during the wars they came to Samos to escape. Majida Ali, a Syrian refugee who arrived in Samos in 2016 and now works as cultural mediator for the camp doctor, said she sees about two victims of rape in the camp a month. Yet the camp offers only one psychologist, whose main job is to assess the trauma of every asylum seeker for his or her case. This means that nobody in the camp gets to see her more than once.
The camp, which is run by the Greek government with UNHCR help, opened in February 2016 as an emergency Reception and Identity Center (RIC)—that is, a temporary processing post. Placed on the side of a mountain just above the town of Vathy, it occupies a former military base designed to hold a mere 648 beds and is surrounded by concrete walls and hurricane fences crowned with coils of razor wire. Enormous lights atop tall poles glare all night long.
Inside, dozens of white shipping containers like Leila’s climb in rows up the hill, with thousands of tents stuffed between them. Heaps of garbage clutter the alleyways, and laundry hangs from fences, barbed wire, and tent tops. Rats run from one pile of filth to another, while children pad barefoot through the mud and dust.
Tuesday April 23, 2019
by Jillian Kestler-D’Amours
A group of asylum seekers wait to be processed after being escorted from their tent encampment to the Canada Border Services in Lacolle, Quebec, Canada in 2017 [File: Christinne Muschi/Reuters]
Who is the Deputy Director of the Somali National Intelligence & Security Agency (NISA) Fahad Yasin? Why is he working with #Shabab Terrorists in #Somalia to wound and kill innocent people in #Mogadishu? Read the facts!
Refugee and legal experts say amendment to asylum law is ‘shocking’ attack on refugee rights.
Montreal, Canada – Refugee advocates and legal experts have raised alarm at a proposed change to Canada’s asylum system, saying the government’s plan would curb refugee rights and have a “chilling effect”.
The Canadian government introduced an amendment to the country’s Immigration and Refugee Act in a 464-page budget bill earlier this month.
The change would prevent people who previously made an asylum claim in specific other countries – the United States, United Kingdom, Australia and New Zealand – from having a full refugee status determination hearing in Canada.
Ottawa says the measure is part of its broader effort “to better manage, discourage and prevent irregular migration”, as thousands of asylum seekers have crossed the border into Canada from the US without visas over the last few years.
The goal also is to make the Canadian refugee system more efficient and reduce delays in processing times, a senior government official told Al Jazeera. But Sharry Aiken, a law professor at Queen’s University in Ontario, said the change may end up “precluding people who are genuine refugees from having a hearing on the merits of their case”.
“It’s just a bedrock principle of Canadian refugee law that claimants are entitled to an oral hearing on the merits of their claim,” she told Al Jazeera.
By telling people they won’t have access to such a hearing, Aiken said Canada is “taking one step down the road of dismantling the entire system of refugee status determination”.
Currently, people seeking refugee protection in Canada must prove they have a “well-founded fear of persecution” in their home country due to their race, religion, or political opinion, among other reasons.
Refugee protection claimants get an oral hearing before an official at the Immigration and Refugee Board (IRB), an independent tribunal that adjudicates on refugee cases.
Under the government’s proposed change, people will no longer have access to that hearing if they applied for refugee protection in one of the countries that Canada says has a refugee system similar to its own.
Instead, they will have what’s called a pre-removal risk assessment.
“We know that children are ripped from their parent’s arms and put in cages. We know that people have to make asylum claims from behind bars in prison. We know that former Attorney General Jeff Sessions greatly restricted the refugee definition. Our response to refugees seeking protection here should not be to make Canada more like Trump’s America by adopting those types of laws.”
MAUREEN SILCOFF, CANADIAN ASSOCIATION OF REFUGEE LAWYERS
That assessment comes with its own set of rules and regulations, and has been described by refugee law experts as being “less efficient” than the refugee hearings at the IRB.
The senior government official defended the amendment, however, saying it is “consistent with international law” and that “Canada remains the gold standard for refugee determination systems”.
Of about 105,000 refugee claims that were made over the last two years in Canada, 3,150 people – or about three percent of all applicants – had previously applied for protection elsewhere, the official said.
People who would be affected by the change “have durable solutions elsewhere”, the official added.
However, Maureen Silcoff of the Canadian Association of Refugee Lawyers said filing a refugee claim in another country does not mean someone has had a fair shot at getting protection.
It also doesn’t mean that people should automatically be shut out of the refugee system in Canada, she told Al Jazeera.
“It’s actually quite shocking that this is what Canada wants to do,” she said.
Silcoff said the change would largely affect people who previously made claims for refugee protection in the US, where the situation for refugees has become increasingly dire under US President Donald Trump.
“We know what’s going on in the United States,” she said.
“We know that children are ripped from their parent’s arms and put in cages. We know that people have to make asylum claims from behind bars in prison. We know that former Attorney General Jeff Sessions greatly restricted the refugee definition,” Silcoff added. “Our response to refugees seeking protection here should not be to make Canada more like Trump’s America by adopting those types of laws.”
Despite the criticism, Justin Trudeau’s government has remained steadfast in its backing of the amendment.
The senior official told Al Jazeera the change must be “looked at in context with all of the other actions that we’re taking”.
In its 2019 budget, Ottawa said it plans to invest $88m [$1.18b Canadian] over five years to implement its so-called Border Enforcement Strategy, and to process refugee claims and enforce removal orders.
The budget also states the government plans to create three new judicial positions “to help ensure efficient and timely processing of asylum claimants seeking judicial review”.
Last year, 55,388 refugee protection claims were referred to the IRB’s Refugee Protection Division. Of the 26,805 cases that were finalised, 14,790 applications were accepted while 8,759 were rejected.
At the end of 2018, 71,675 refugee protection claims were still being processed.
Meanwhile, the head of the United Nations High Commission for Refugees’ office in Canada has publicly defended the government’s proposed change, saying it keeps the country “in line with international law”.
“The measure … still upholds a welcoming approach,” Jean-Nicolas Beuze told The Globe and Mail newspaper on 16 April.
“It’s not undermining the protection that people will receive if they arrive in Canada and want to be recognised as refugees.”
That was echoed by the senior government official, who told Al Jazeera that, “people who are no longer eligible to make an asylum claim … are not immediately deported” from Canada.
“There is still a robust process for them,” the official said.
Struggle to survive
However, Janet Dench, executive director of the Canadian Council for Refugees, a national advocacy group, said the pre-removal risk assessment is “likely to be extremely inefficient”.
Funnelling more refugee claimants into this system may translate into longer wait times, she said, with a “huge number of extra cases [added into] a process that is not equipped for it”.
“There’s very serious rights issues at stake here,” Dench added.
People forced into the pre-removal risk assessment system are also “technically not refugee claimants”, Dench said, and they therefore don’t have access to a comparable level of services in Canada.
“They may struggle to survive, and yet they may wait longer in that situation,” she said.
Dench also said people in pre-removal risk assessment do not have access to an appeal through the IRB.
Their only recourse is to ask a federal court to review a decision if their claim is rejected, Dench said, but people don’t have a stay of removal during that process, meaning they can be deported before their appeal is heard.
“The way to make the system work fairly and efficiently is to simplify it and say everybody who needs protection gets a hearing and we focus on making the decisions at the IRB quickly and fairly,” she said.
Beyond the changes to the system, Aiken also criticised the government for “burying” the change in a budget bill.
She called that decision “unconscionable, shocking, a disappointment and a page torn straight out of the Conservative playbook”.
Trudeau’s predecessor, former Conservative Party leader and prime minister, Stephen Harper, often used omnibus bills to pass contentious legislative changes without pushback.
In his 2015 election campaign, Trudeau – who is facing a tough fight ahead of a federal vote in October – pledged that his Liberal Party would “not resort to legislative tricks to avoid scrutiny”.
“Stephen Harper has used prorogation to avoid difficult political circumstances. We will not,” the party’s platform stated at the time.
Pushing the amendments through in a budget bill means they will not go to parliamentary committee for study, and it does not allow expert witnesses to present their views, Aiken said.
“It can’t be overstated how reprehensible it is that in the lead-up to an election, this government has chosen to introduce significant changes to Canada’s laws … in a budget bill,” she said.
Silcoff agreed, saying that including the change in the budget bill is “an attempt to ram it through quickly without full consideration”.
“Canada has a reputation of being a leader in human rights, a leader in refugee protection,” she said. “And I think we need to maintain that – and not take a step backward.”
Officials say Aden Abdi Mohamed known as “Aden Obe” surrendered Tuesday near the main Bardhere town. Aden Obe surrendered with another al-Shabab official identified as Food Aden Mohamoud who is described as a taxation official.
Obe held various positions with al-Shabab, including Consultative Council member, and head of Social Affairs. Most recently, he worked for al-Shabab as head of logistics in Lower Jubba region, according to Somali officials.
Deputy Governor of Gedo region Mohamed Hussein Al-Qaadi said the two men have been in contact with federal government officials who convinced them to defect. He said their defection is a “setback” to al-Shabab.
Obe previously was a member of the Islamic Courts Union which ruled south central Somalia for six months in 2006.
Tuesday April 23, 2019
Somali officials say a senior al-Shabab official has defected from the group and surrendered to the Somali government in the southwestern Gedo region.
A new Hezbollah: Qatar’s militia in Somalia
Qatar’s regime has created a new terrorist entity in Somalia. Terrified by the Saudi, Emirati, and Egyptian support for the Somalian president, it funded the Brotherhood’s Islah party in the roiled country and founded a militia formed from Al-Shabaab terrorist group.
Al Jazeera’s Fahad Yasin had secretly met with Qatari and Iranian intelligence officers and a Somalian presidency official has close ties with Doha’s regime.
Tamim tasked him with destabilizing Jubaland, Galmudug, and Puntland, but the self-governed provinces reject Qatar’s pro-terror policies.
The goal is to form a militia in Somalia similar to Hezbollah and Hamas. Zakaria Ismail, a leader from Al-Shabaab, is already recruiting fighters.
Qatari and Iranian intelligence officers are training them and an operations rooms in Qatar’s embassy will run the newly born terrorist group.
A scorecard for the first two years and the prospects for the remaining two
Press Release for the Ongoing Political Derailment & the Extreme Corruption of the Somali Federal Government
Mogadishu on Tuesday March 26, 2919 Somali Institute of Security Studies (SIOSS) hereby officially expose to the Somali People and the world at large that the Somali Federal Government has hired and rehired ex- well-known #Shabab terrorists Intelligence and Bomb Squad criminal leaders who had been planning and executing explosive and terrorism attacks against innocent people, businesses and governmental sites in Mogadishu and around #Somalia.
The Somali Federal Government has completely failed to implement and comply with the following good governance procedures:
- Somali Federal Government has definitely failed to comply with the Somali Federal Constitution.
- Somali Federal Government has unlawfully rejected to establish the Somali Judiciary Committee for past two years.
- Somali Federal Government has illegally hired unqualified Somali Lawyers to place or replace existing Somali Federal Government Lawyers whose qualification and experience met the standard requirement of the Somali Federal Constitution. .
- Somali Federal Government has been ignoring to establish the Somali Anti- Corruption Agency and its leadership for past two years making corruption at all levers as business as usual.
- Somali Federal Government has not been able to pay salaries to the needy Somali Federal Armed Forces monthly for the past two years while Somalia’s Top Leaders with its concerned ministers were either misappropriating or stealing their salaries intentionally for months.
- Somali Federal Government has failed constitutionally derailing to stabilize and mediate between the Somali Federal Lower House and the Somali Federal Upper House which declared publicly that their top leadership were not, are not and will not be working together for common good after political power grabbing started between two houses.
- Somali Federal Government has misused and misappropriated the foreign donation for personal or political group interests, and millions are not accounted for.
- Somali Federal Government has been unable to coordinate and implement to fix public issues based on cabinet consensus, and it is still lack of effective cabinet collaboration to solve and tackle political derailments at state or regional semi-autonomous states.
- Somali Federal Government has illegally changed the Somali Federal Constitution article for Somali Central Bank banking leadership, regulations and appointments paving the way foreigners to take up the post of the Governor of the Somali Central Bank which the Somali House amended it with bribes from the Office of the Prime Minister and the Office of the Somali President.
- Somali Federal Government has issued illegal licenses to foreign companies to either start mining illegally or fish in the Somali Coastline for less than normal world standardized regulations.
- Somali Federal Government has basically and legally loss the confidence and cooperation between the Somali Federal Government and the Somali Semi-autonomous states ever since this extremely and extraordinarily corrupted Somali Federal Government took up power in the country until now on.
- Somali Federal Government has intentionally ousted the United Nations Political Office for Somalia Envoy H.E. Nikolas Haysom after he deliberately exposed and questioned about the illegalities of the Somali Federal Government in the South West State Presidential Elections and its chaos.
- Somali Federal Government ceased to appoint professional and career Somali diplomatic staff since on February 08, 2017 until now, and the Somali Federal Ministry of Foreign Affairs including other key Ministries are either managed or secretly dictated by foreign powers through their naturalized Somali citizens.
- Somali Federal Government has no federal media outlets, and all local media outlets belongs to private investors including the Somali National Television (SNTV) so, it is the best time people to know the truth.
- Somali Federal Government has no accountability, transparency and trustworthiness to lead #Somalia for past two years, and majority of the Somali people prefers its top leadership to resign willy-nilly so that a new leadership will try to finish for remaining two years in order to secure law and order in the Republic of Somalia.
We, the Somali Institute of Security Studies (SIOSS) would like to encourage the Somali leadership to accept their political derailment and ongoing failures in the country, and they must apologize to the Somali people for wasting their resources and time for political derailments and group pleasure spending.Wake up Somalis now!
And Let’s start defending our country from internal and external enemies.
All Praise belongs to Allah!
Ambassador Al-Haji Dr. Badal W. Kariye (Warfa)
Somali Institute of Security Studies (SIOSS)
1 Jidka Villa Somalia
The Federal Republic of Somalia
Wednesday March 20, 2019
By Ryan Browne
CNN Amnesty International accused the US military on Tuesday of causing civilian casualties in a series of airstrikes in Somalia in 2017 and 2018, claims the US military denies.
Amnesty International accused the US military on Tuesday of causing civilian casualties in a series of airstrikes in Somalia in 2017 and 2018, claims the US military denies.
The strikes in question came after President Donald Trump eased restrictions on the use of airpower in the East African nation.
US Africa Command, which oversees US military operations on the continent, firmly rejected the allegations, saying it has made efforts to ensure the safety of civilians and that it had reviewed the allegations and found no evidence to support them.
While Africa Command acknowledged conducting strikes in four of the locations and times identified in the report, it said it had reviewed the allegations and found the targets to have been affiliated with Al-Shabaab.
The Amnesty International report, released Tuesday night, alleges that 14 civilians were killed and eight were injured in a series of five airstrikes in the Lower Shabelle region of Somalia, a hotbed of Al-Shabaab militant activity.
Because of the security situation in the targeted area neither the Amnesty team nor the US military was able to do on-the-ground investigations into the results of the strikes.
“In the incidents presented in this report, civilians were killed and injured in attacks that may have violated international humanitarian law … and could, in some cases, constitute war crimes,” the report alleges, saying that several of the strikes had killed civilians who were near suspected Al-Shabaab militants.
The dates of the strikes range from October 2017 to December 2018.
“We take all allegations of civilian casualties seriously regardless of their origin,” Africa Command said in a statement following the report’s release, saying it had reviewed Amnesty’s allegations prior to the report’s publication.
“Our assessments found that no AFRICOM airstrike resulted in any civilian casualty or injury. Our assessments are based on post-strike analysis using intelligence methods not available to non-military organizations,” the statement added.
Africa Command said that many of the allegations involved claims made by media outlets affiliated with Al-Shabaab, and that “it is in the interest of the terrorist group al-Shabaab to untruthfully claim civilian casualties. It is also in the interest of al-Shabaab to coerce community members to make untrue claims.”
Maj. Gen. Gregg Olson, Africa Command director of operations, said in a conference call with reporters, “I’m not going to go into the specifics of the sources and methods that we use to characterize targets but I will tell you that it is a process that unfolds over time as we look at things like pattern of life, as we look at things like all source intelligence and then fuse together a picture that provides us a standard that is appropriate under international humanitarian law. And that accounts for the information available at the site before any decision to strike is made.”
There has been a significant increase in US airstrikes in Somalia since Trump authorized the military to carry out precision strikes targeting Al-Shabaab in March 2017 in an effort to bolster the Somali government. Prior to that, the US military was authorized to conduct airstrikes only in defense of advisers on the ground.
At least 252 fighters from the al Qaeda-affiliated Al-Shabaab have been killed in 28 airstrikes so far in 2019, with no civilian deaths, according to figures released by US Africa Command.
The most recent strike took place Tuesday in the vicinity of Awdheegle, Lower Shabelle Region, and killed three “terrorists,” according to a statement Tuesday by Africa Command.
The statement said the US military was aware of reports alleging civilian casualties from Tuesday’s airstrike and that as with every allegation, Africa Command “will review any information it has about the incident, including any relevant information provided by third parties.”
In 2018, the US conducted 47 airstrikes targeting Al-Shabaab, killing about 338 militants. In 2017, the US carried out 35 airstrikes, and in 2016 it conducted 15.
US defense officials have told CNN that the recent increase in the pace of strikes is due to successes that local Somali security forces have been having in combating Al-Shabaab.
The US military estimates that Al-Shabaab commands over 4,000 fighters.
The US has 500 to 600 troops in Somalia, primarily in advisory roles.
Wednesday March 20, 2019
KCB is looking to set up subsidiaries in Somalia and the DR Congo as it looks to grow its regional footprint to 10 countries. The bank also aims to be the first from Kenya to start operations in Ethiopia.
The lender’s chief executive officer, Joshua Oigara, said in an interview on Tuesday that KCB is optimistic that ongoing reforms by the Abiy Ahmed-led government will pave the way for the bank to open a fully-fledged branch in Ethiopia before the end of next year.
KCB opened a representative office in Kenya’s northern neighbour in 2016.
Ethiopian laws bar licensing of foreign banks to operate fully-fledged services, but rapid reforms being laid out by the country’s PM have raised hopes that lenders will be allowed to set up branches there.
“Our main area of focus is to have a business and presence in Ethiopia. We hope that by the end of 2020 we can be allowed to go further whether by opening a branch or through our mobile lending platform,” said Mr Oigara.
KCB is planning entry into DR Congo within the next three years through an acquisition like was the case with Equity Bank in 2015.
“In Congo, we are not looking to open a branch and then grow from there. It is going to be through an acquisition or a combination of businesses…in three years we should have made a conclusion to enter the country.”
Somalia has, however, proved to be a tougher market, Mr Oigara added, largely due to lack of government structures on registration of persons that make it hard for a lender to apply international regulations on money laundering.
Monday October 22, 2018 As part of efforts to implement institutional reforms, the Somali Police Force (SPF) has trained 28 senior-level officers, on Strategic Planning and Management. Facilitated by the police component of the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM), the UN and local experts, the course, the first of its kind for the force, is part of the organizational and culture change activities, being undertaken within the institution, to improve efficiency and performance, among top-level officers. The officials, most of whom head various directorates and units within the force, will use skills acquired to implement desired change. “With this training, the officers acquired skills, knowledge and attitudes, that are necessary for them to be able to rise to the occasion and professionally carry out their duties in accordance with the expectations of the Somali population, with due diligence to and observance of human rights,” said Christine Alalo, the Acting AMISOM Police Commissioner, at the conclusion of the ten-day course, in Mogadishu today. As a leadership tool, strategic management can be instrumental in fostering a culture of excellence and enhancing professionalism in a workforce, and in turn, maximize performance and output. AMISOM hopes, that the training will improve the interfacing and collaboration between various departments of the Somali Police Force. “We have learnt vital leadership skills that we didn’t know before. This training is a must for every senior officer,” said Lt. Col. Fadumo Hassan Mohamed, the SPF head of community policing, who was one of the trainees. Participants learnt how to develop a strategic vision and mission for the police force, principles of management, strategic planning and leadership, among other topics. “We need a lot of catching up to do, to reach the same level with the rest of the world; and recover quickly. The knowledge you have acquired shouldn’t sit with you. You need to cascade it down and pass it on to your junior officers. That’s the essence of imparting you with such skills,” Gen. Bashir Abdi Mohamed, the Somali Police Commissioner told the course participants. Gen. Ahmed Dayib Ahmed, the SPF head of operations described the training as timely, saying such leadership development courses boosted performance in the police hierarchy. The Federal Minister of Interior, Mr. Mohamed Abukar Islow and the Somali deputy Police Chief, Ms. Zakia Hussein attended the closing ceremony of the management course.
Ethiopia signs peace deal with rebels from gas-rich region
Monday October 22, 2018 Aaron Maasho ADDIS ABABA (Reuters) – Ethiopia signed a peace deal on Sunday with Ogaden National Liberation Front (ONLF) rebels from its Somali Region, whom it had previously outlawed as a “terrorist group,” officials said. The ONLF launched its bid for secession of the Somali Region, also known as Ogaden, in eastern Ethiopia in 1984. In 2007, Ethiopian forces launched a large-scale offensive against the group after the rebels killed 74 people in an attack on a Chinese-run oil facility. Earlier this year, parliament removed the ONLF from a list of banned movements as part of a reform drive being led by Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, who has extended an olive branch to opponents. The ONLF declared a ceasefire in August. He has acknowledged and condemned widespread abuses by the security forces, likening the situation to state terrorism, and he has worked to forge peace with Eritrea, with which Addis Ababa has been locked in a military standoff since a 1998-2000 border war in which 80,000 people are thought to have died. Reporting by Aaron Maasho; Editing by Daniel Wallis
Somalia voices support for Saudi Arabia amidst mounting pressure over missing journalist
The Somali government reiterated its full support to Saudi Arabia and voiced opposition against attempts to undermine its sovereignty.In a statement released on Monday by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, The Somali government said that they would remain steadfast in their support with the “brotherly” Kingdon of Saudi Arabia. It also warned against attempting to harm Saudi Arabia by targeting its economic interests. The statement goes on to say that the international community should move away from “provocations and deliberate campaigns against Saudi Arabia”. Saudi Arabia is suspected of luring journalist and critic Jamal Khashoggi to the Saudi consulate in Istanbul where Saudi agents murdered him and disposed of his body. Since the onset of the incident, Saudi officials have denied any wrongdoing and say that he merely left from a separate exit. They have been unable to provide proof to corroborate this claim. Somalia joined UAE, Bahrain, Egypt, Lebanon, Oman and Jordan in issuing similarly worded statements reaffirming their support for Saudi Arabia. The comments come just hours before U.S. President Donald Trump suggested that “rogue killers” could be responsible for the journalist’s disappearance. President’s Trump’s comments appear to be a life jacket for Saudi officials who have been fumbling to explain the situation. Saudi Arabia has relied heavily on strong-arm diplomacy, threatening the international community that any action taken will be bet by even stronger action by the Saudi government. Domestically, the Kingdom has warned that spreading rumours or fake news is considered cybercrime and is punishable by a 5-year prison sentence and a hefty fine. The disappearance of Khashoggi has created a diplomatic rift between Saudi Arabia and the West. International firms have already begun pulling out of a high-profile investment summit, the Future Investment Initiative conference, due to take place later this month in the Saudi capital, Riyadh.
Australia mulls banning some immigrants from biggest cities Wednesday October 10, 2018 ROD McGUIRK CANBERRA, Australia (AP) — Startping a new life in Australia might not come with views of the Sydney Opera House or surfing at the city’s Bondi Beach with the government considering a ban on some immigrants from settling in big cities. Minister for Cities, Urban Infrastructure and Population Alan Tudge said Tuesday that his government wants to cut the number of immigrants moving to Sydney and Melbourne in a bid to reduce congestion in Australia’s two biggest cities. Tudge said placing conditions on visas that force immigrants to stay in less popular centers for several years would increase the likelihood that they would settle in those places permanently. “Nearly every visa has conditions attached to it, so it wouldn’t be unusual to have a geographic attachment to a particular visa,” Tudge told Australian Broadcasting Corp. Australia mulls banning some immigrants from biggest cities. Australia has the fastest population growth of any advanced Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development country other than Canada, growing 1.6 percent a year. But the population of Melbourne grew last year by 2.7 percent, the population of the southeast corner of Queensland state around Brisbane and the Gold Coast grew by 2.3 percent, and Sydney grew by 2.1 percent. The main driver of population growth in Sydney and Melbourne was overseas migration, with 87 percent of skilled migrants to Australia and almost all refugees gravitating to those cities. Growth in the Brisbane-Gold Coast region reflected higher levels of population shift within Australia and a higher birthrate. Tudge said some categories of immigrants would be exempt from geographic blocks. Migrants who were sponsored by employers would be able to work where employers need them and those on family reunion visas, typically a foreigner marrying an Australia, would also be free to live where they chose. Sponsored employees make up 25 percent of Australia’s immigrant intake and family reunion visas make up 30 percent. Marion Terrill, an expert on cities and transport from the Melbourne-based Grattan Institute think tank, said governments need to improve infrastructure in major cities rather than curb population growth. “People are voting with their feet, they want to be in cities and so I think the job for government is to ensure that cities work and that people can get around rather than to try to get people to go where they don’t want to go,” Terrill said. Melissa Montero, an immigrant advocate and chief executive of the Sydney-based Community Migrant Resource Center, said immigrants need social support, language services as well as jobs to successfully resettle. Carla Wilshire, another immigrant advocate and chief executive of Migrant Council Australia in Canberra, suggested that government invest in services outside Sydney and Melbourne to make smaller towns more attractive to immigrants. Mark Morey, secretary of Unions NSW, which represents trade unions in New South Wales state, said the government’s plan would leave immigrants isolated, with fewer job options and with less pay than they could hope for in big cities. Myanmar must back ‘credible’ Rohingya inquiry, Japanese PM tells Suu Kyi Wednesday October 10, 2018 Hannah Ellis-Petersen and agencies Myanmar leader Aung San Suu Kyi delivers a speech at the Akasaka palace in Tokyo, Japan on Tuesday. Photograph: FRANCK ROBICHON/POOL/EPA Japanese prime minister Shinzo Abe has told Myanmar’s leader that a credible investigation into alleged human rights violations against Rohingya Muslims is key to resolving the crisis. Abe told a joint news conference after talks with Aung San Suu Kyi that Japan would support efforts by Myanmar to accommodate Rohingya who returned home from refugee camps in neighbouring Bangladesh. “This problem is complicated and serious, and Japan will think with Myanmar and support its effort in resolving the problem,” Abe said on Tuesday. “A credible investigation by the independent panel is particularly important.” Aung San Suu Kyi said she welcomed Japan’s support “for our efforts for the refugees’ return.” However, Abe’s comments came just 24 hours after the UN special rapporteur to Myanmar Yanghee Lee released a fact-finding report which concluded that Myanmar is “unable and unwilling” to investigate its abuses against Rohingya Muslims. Buddhist-majority Myanmar’s military is accused of widespread rights violations, including rape, murder, torture and burning villages, which sent over 700,000 Rohingya fleeing to Bangladesh since August last year. A UN fact-finding mission released in August accused the Myanmar military of carrying out genocide against the muslim minority. Myanmar authorities, including the army, have rejected independent international investigations and conducted their own inquiries which have declared their forces free of criminal actions. Under pressure from the international community, in July the government commissioned another panel to investigate Rahkine. But Yee, who is banned from entering Myanmar because of her criticism of the regime, said the Myanmar government had proven itself incapable of carrying out an unbiased investigation, highlighting what she described as the country’s “limited and insufficient steps” so far. “The onus is on the international community to take action,” Yee warned. Speaking during her visit to Tokyo for a six-nation Mekong regional summit, Aung San Suu Kyi promised an “accurate and appropriate” investigation. She defended the government-commissioned panel as free and effective, and its members – one each from Japan and the Philippines and two from Myanmar – as experts on human rights and international issues. However, many have raised doubts about the panel’s impartiality and willingness to condemn any atrocities. The panel member from the Philippines, former undersecretary of foreign affairs Rosario Manalo, recently said of their investigation: “I will assure you that there will be no blaming of anybody, no finger-pointing of anybody”, while the Burmese lawyer on the panel, Aung Tun Thet, has publicly stated his disbelief that ethnic cleansing happened in Rahkine. In a speech on Monday to Japanese businessmen Aung San Suu Kyi had also pledged “transparency” over her government’s handling of the Rohingya crisis. She added: “I’m ready to acknowledge that we have challenges to face particularly with regard to Rakhine and with the struggles we have on the peace front.” Myanmar commissioned the panel after rights groups called for the international criminal court to investigate the alleged abuses. Myanmar’s government, which is not a member of the court in the Hague, rejected any participation in its proceedings. Jamal Khashoggi: Turkish newspaper releases names of 15 Saudi suspects Wednesday October 10, 2018 In the most detailed Turkish account about the reported murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, a pro-government newspaper released late on Tuesday the alleged names and photos of 15 Saudi nationals it said travelled to Istanbul the day Khashoggi disappeared. Earlier on Tuesday, a source close to the investigation said 15 Saudis that visited the consulate that day and left the country are all under suspicion. Turks and civilians who also visited the building are all being treated as suspects, the source said. Turkish newspaper Daily Sabah published the names and pictures of the suspects along with the time they arrived and left from the airport. Three of them were members of Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman’s elite close protection unit, the source told MEE. He added that the police report states that the luggage of the Saudi individuals was inspected upon their departure and did not contain anything suspicious. The Daily Sabah said the Saudi nationals arrived from Riyadh to Istanbul on two private jets with the tail numbers HZ SK1 and HZ SK2. According to the report, most of them stayed at the Wyndham Grand Hotel and Movenpick Hotel, which is close to the consulate. All of the them left early in the evening on Tuesday 2 October. According to a Washington Post report on Tuesday, US intelligence officials intercepted communications from Saudi officials discussing a plan to capture Jamal Khashoggi. The officials wanted to bring him back to Saudi, the Post reported, citing an unidentified official familiar with the situation. The New York Times cited a Turkish official as saying a bone saw was used to dismember Khashoggi’s body. “The official described a quick and complex operation in which Mr. Khashoggi was killed within two hours of his arrival at the consulate by a team of Saudi agents, who dismembered his body with a bone saw they brought for the purpose,” the newspaper reported on Tuesday. Khashoggi, a Saudi columnist for the Washington Post who had been critical of his country’s ruler, went missing after entering the Saudi consulate to retrieve personal paperwork on 2 October. Turkish officials say they believe he was killed in the consulate. Saudi Arabia insists that he left less than an hour after arriving. But the kingdom has shown no evidence of his departure from the building. His fiancee, who was waiting outside, first raised the alarm when he did not emerge from the building past its hours of operation. On Tuesday, Washington Post publisher Fred Ryan released a statement calling for more information on Khashoggi’s whereabouts. He said: “Silence, delays and denials are not acceptable.” The consulate had instructed its 28 Turkish employees to take the day off on 2 October, Turkish daily newspaper Hurriyet first reported on Monday night. Turkish security sources confirmed the newspaper’s report to MEE, and added that “there were intensive moves in and out of the consulate” last Tuesday. “The reason given to the Turkish employees to take the day off was there was an important diplomatic meeting,” a Turkish source told MEE. Limo company in N.Y. crash owned by FBI informant who infiltrated Muslim groups after 9/11 October 9, 2018 Records indicate that the limousine company involved in a crash that killed 20 people in upstate New York is owned by a noted FBI informant. Federal transportation records say Prestige Limousine was owned by Shahed Hussain and was based at a motel in Gansevoort. Court records show that the Shahed Hussain who owns that motel gained fame in the years after the Sept. 11 attacks for infiltrating Muslim groups for the FBI. He posed as a terrorist sympathizer in at least three investigations. In one case, he helped convict men accused of plotting to bomb New York synagogues. AMISOM Police hands over refurbished police station to Somali Police authorities October 8, 2018 Residents of Dayniile district in Somalia’s capital of Mogadishu, can now enjoy better policing services closer to their homes, following the renovation of a hitherto derelict district police headquarters. The fully refurbished police building, rehabilitated with the support of the Japanese government, through AMISOM Police and the Civil Affairs Unit, was formally handed over to the Somali police authorities today. “We must exit (Somalia), when we have uplifted the Somali Police to a certain level of independence – in terms of capacity building and in terms of infrastructure and logistics,” said AMISOM acting Police Commissioner Ms. Christine Alalo, during the handover ceremony She reiterated AMISOM’s commitment to training and equipping the police force with necessary skills, to enable them improve their services across the country. Dayniile Police Station was identified for renovation by Individual Police Officers from AMISOM, who collocate with their Somali counterparts, in various police stations across the capital, to carry out a mentorship programme. Before its renovation, the station lacked decent sanitary facilities and office space. The refurbishment has created a humane working environment for police officers stationed at the facility. The deputy chief of the Somali Police Force Ms. Zakia Hussein, expressed gratitude to AMISOM for going beyond its primary duty, to help the Somali Police Force. “Thank you our partners AMISOM Police, not only for the help you have accorded to us, but also in every aspect of our policing and the way you are assisting us; and the way we are working together,” said the deputy police chief. The police station has also been fitted with solar panels to provide electricity. Additionally, Ms. Alalo donated 3,000 notebooks to the police officers to help in keeping records of incidents while in the field. The notebooks will be shared across police stations in the capital. Other than training and mentoring police officers, AMISOM has supported the construction, renovation and upgrade of various police stations across the country, with the aim of enhancing the standards of policing.
Djiboutians went to the polls on Friday morning to elect the country’s next National Assembly. Voters began pouring into polling stations across the country at around 6 am this morning to elect candidates running for the 65 seats in the National Assembly or Chamber of Deputies as it is known locally. Members will sit for a 5-year term. The contenders have officially concluded their two weeks of campaigning on Wednesday. The country’s Electoral Commision had called on the more than half a million eligible voters turn up in large to participate the election. 35 of the 65 seats are contested in Djibouti’s capital city. The five political parties vying for the general election include: Union pour la Majorité Présidentielle (UMP) Djibouti Union for Democracy and Jastice (UDJ) Djiboutien pour le Développement(PDD) Centre Démocrate Unifié Djiboutien (CDU) Republican Alliance for Democracy (RAD) Citing lack of transparency, the Mouvement pour le Renouveau Démocratique et le Développement (MRD) declared it will boycott the elections, just as they did in 2016 during the Presidential Elections. The ruling political coalition Union pour la Majorité Présidentielle (UMP) or Union for the Presidential Majority led by incumbent President Ismaïl Omar Guelleh is expected by analysts to win the most seats. Unlike in 2013, the UMP is facing a divided opposition coalition. Furthermore, the UMP is the only party that has the financial and human resource to contest all 65 seats in the National Assembly. The UMP dominates the current National Assembly with 43 seats. The elections are expected to be observed by delegates from AU, EU, UN and IGAD. African Union on Monday deployed 28 election observers who are drawn from 22 countries. The AU delegates is led by the former Prime Minister of Central African Republic, Anicet Georges Dologuele The polling stations will officially close at 6 P.M. local time.
The Somali government has warned of an imminent terror attack barely six months after the deadliest attack in Somalia’s history. Ministry of Information warned of a looming vehicle-borne improvised explosive devices ( VBIEDs) threat in the Somali capital. Speaking to media after a cabinet meeting on Thursday, deputy minister for Information, Abdirahman Ifan Yonis warned the public of two vehicles loaded with explosives that security officials say is being planned to be used for an attack. “The report submitted by security minister had shown that there were two VBIEDs sent to execute attacks in the city, one of the vehicles resembles those of Sahal Company which operates at the airport,” said Yonis. The minister noted that they put increased security measures by deploying security forces in many parts of the town. “Intelligence reconnaissance operations will be increased. our forces will remain vigilant and we will take all necessary measures to foil the attacks,” Yonis pledged. He called on the public to work with the security officers and report any suspicious activity. The warning comes barely six months after Mogadishu witnessed the infamous October deadly truck bomb. The attack which was widely described as “The worst single attack in the country’s history” occurred at Zobe junction. Over 500 people killed and more than 300 others wounded in the attack. No group yet claimed the responsibility for the heinous attack though the Somali government has blamed Al-Shabaab. #Sweden rejected to give visiting entry vise 2 ex- #Somalia’s Damu-Jadid # terror linked #President H.E. Hassan Sheikh Mohamud. Madaxweynihii Hore Ee Somalia oo loo diiday inuu galo Sweden https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-rw4Yh0DNfU 2 These two #Somali Members of #Parliament who are troublemakers for longtime, & they are still confusing #people in #Somalia while they are constantly ignoring the federal constitution which they were elected: Xil Zakariye oo ujawabay Xil Ahmed Fiqi | Maqaamka muqdisho iyo Doorka Mucaradka Dowlada https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ivos3rPjMqQ 3 Who can hide the truth now? Can you now deny or hide the facts of local and foreign arming and funding terrorists in Somalia? #Somalia’s recently fired Director of the Somali National #Intelligence and Security Agency “NISA” Amb. Abdillahi Sanboloshe exposed how #Shabab #terrorists operates in #Somali #Government even occupies key Somali governmental posts as devil ringleaders at the Somali Statehouse literally known as “Villa Somalia”. #Somalia’s recently fired Director of the Somali National #Intelligence and Security Agency “NISA” Ambassador Abdillahi Sanbolooshe has also exposed that there are number of foreign intelligence entities operating in #Somalia for many years illegally without even support or training Somali counterparts. So, why is the #Somalia’s recently fired Director of the Somali National #Intelligence and Security Agency “NISA”Ambassador Abdillahi Sanbolooshe now exposing more truth and the illegal activities at the Somali Statehouse which is managed and run by the Chief of Cabinet Fahad Yasin whose illegal activities and organized crimes have been reported and exposed by the United Nastions Monitoring Group on Somalia and Eritrea report on July 13, 2013 and in many other local and international reports. DAAWO FULL WAREYSI SANBALOOLSHE KHEYRE WAA MUNAAFAQ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tOhg-QvzYrI Press Release for Exposing Michael Keating (UNSOM) on the situation in Somalia – Security Council, 8165th meeting on 24 Jan 2018 – Remarks by Mr. Michael Keating, Special Representative of the Secretary General for Somalia and Head of the United Nations Assistance Mission in Somalia (UNSOM) on the situation in Somalia. On Friday January 26, 2018 Somali Institute of Security Studies (SIOSS) hereby officially exposed that the United Nations Special Envoy for Somalia H.E. Micheal Keating had spoken at the United Nations Security Council Meeting on Thursday January 24, 2018 for briefing current political crisis and developments in Somalia which he partially exposed the whole truth about the current political crisis and developments in Somalia. Unfortunately, the #UNSOM Special Envoy for Somalia H.E. Micheal Keating has only exposed partial truth about Somalia’s internal crisis and foreign derailments because it is true that the UNSOM Special Envoy for Somalia Micheal Keating has never talked about illegal foreign mercenary troops operating illegally in Somalia as well as foreign International NGOS swindling on bogus projects in Somalia including the Various #NGOS without transparency, accountability and trustworthy. The fact is that the Somali Federal Government, its foreign supporting partners and the Special Representative of the Secretary General for Somalia and Head of the United Nations Assistance Mission in Somalia (UNSOM) H.E. Michael Keating have not been acting to solve #Somalia’s internal crisis collectively and sincerely in addition to this kind of acting hypocrisy, they do more harm to derail peace than to achieve durable solutions in Somalia. According to the reality in Somalia’s current political crisis, it is truth that the Somali Federal Government failed to establish the Somali Judiciary Commission and the Somali Ant-Corruption Agency for almost a year now so, what developments is the #UNSOM Special Envoy for Somalia H.E. Micheal Keating talking about rather telling and spearing more diplomatic lies at the United Nations Security Council Meet on Thursday January 24, 2018 in New York? The Special Representative of the Secretary General for Somalia and Head of the United Nations Assistance Mission in Somalia (UNSOM) Michael Keating has never mentioned that there are ex- well-known Shabab leading terrorists who joined the Somali Federal Government in order to take key security posts within the Somali Federal Government where they have already executed many terrorism related incidents including the October 14 Mogadishu blast killing more 512 people and wounding many as he stated in his televised meeting with the United Nations Security Council Meeting. Somalis are ready to support the Somali Federal Government if the Somali President H.E. Mohamed Abdillahi Farmajo fires all ex- Shabab linked leading #terrorists within the Federal Government of the Republic of Somalia, and if he appoints a Prime Minister with a background who has never been reported or exposed his or her links with local, regional and global Mafia related companies or agencies of special interests. Somali Institute of Security Studies (SIOSS) also warned the Somaliland State and Puntland State to stop re-organizing tribal and inter-clan fighting in Somalia several times, and it is too bad that the Special Representative of the Secretary General for Somalia and Head of the United Nations Assistance Mission in Somalia (UNSOM) Michael Keating has never mentioned which neighboring and global countries have been refueling Somalia’s internal affairs by using any forms of corrupted methods to control and dictate Somalia’s daily affairs by any means. All Praise belongs to Allah! Best Wishes, Ambassador Dr. Badal W. Kariye (Warfa) President Somali Institute of Security Studies (SIOSS) 1 Jidka Villa Somalia The Federal Republic of Somalia Email: email@example.com http://www.sioss.org/news http://webtv.un.org/watch/michael-keating-unsom-on-the-situation-in-somalia-security-council-8165th-meeting/5718371637001/?lan=english New York 24 January 2018 Unfortunately, the #UNSOM Special Envoy for Somalia H.E. Micheal Keating has only exposed partial truth about Somalia’s internal crisis and foreign derailments because it is true that the UNSOM Special Envoy for Somalia Micheal Keating has never talked about illegal foreign mercenary troops operating illegally in Somalia as well as foreign International NGOS swindling on bogus projects in Somalia including the Various #NGOS. Michael Keating (UNSOM) on the situation in Somalia – Security Council, 8165th meeting 24 Jan 2018 – Remarks by Mr. Michael Keating, Special Representative of the Secretary General for Somalia and Head of the United Nations Assistance Mission in Somalia (UNSOM) on the situation in http://webtv.un.org/watch/michael-keating-unsom-on-the-situation-in-somalia-security-council-8165th-meeting/5718371637001/?lan=english Mogadishu, 24 January 2018 – The Federal Government of Somalia (FGS) is looking after un-accompanied children that were rescued from terrorists groups on 19 January 2018. These children are now receiving full protection and rights. The FGS will provide all basic services to these children, as the necessity in rehabilitating these children is indeed critical to their long-term physiological and mental wellbeing. Somali National Security Forces rescued 35 kidnapped male children from an al-Shabaab indoctrination camp in southern Somalia on 19 January 2018. The Federal Government of Somalia received credible information on the location of the camp and the activities that were going on for a while. As soon as the information was verified Somali National Security Forces began their operation, which was very successful. The Federal Government of Somalia is committed in carrying out military operations in order to bring peace and safety in the country. The FGS will never accept children to be used as militias. Terrorists group, Al-Shabaab has no regard to the welfare of children and they demonstrated their cruelty to children. Al-Shabaab indoctrinates children and they force them to terrorist?s activities. The Federal Government of Somalia prioritizes security so that every citizen will enjoy peace and stability in order to develop the nation. The FGS has been making significant progress in retaking territory from the terrorists in order to deny them re-grouping and planning terrorist attacks to civilian areas. The FGS has been re-establishing civil governance, and bringing stability back to the Somali people. END Ministry of Information, Culture & Tourism The 7 Facts of #Somalia’s #Shabab #Terrorists Recruited and Invested Government on Tuesday January 23, 2018, Who can hide the truth now? 1. Recently resigned #Banadir Region #Governor & Mogadishu Mayor Tabit Abdi exposed that the Chief of Staff at the Somali Presidential Palace Mr. Fahad Yasin is terrorist financier in #Mogadishu who planned many #terrorism linked operations in #Mogadishu and #Somalia at large 2. Is ex- Well-known #Shabab leading #Shabab #terrorist #Commander Mohamed Aden Kofi still serving as the Current #Director of the #Somali #Immigration & #Nationalities? What #AMISOMSomalia or other #foreign #troops fighting for if known Shabab #terrorists are #working #freely. 3.Which #international #organizations and #foreign countries #arms and #funds #Somalia’s various #terrorism linked organizations in #Somalia including #Shabab #terrorists? And why such foreign entities continue to derail peace in #Somalia? 4. Who many ex- well-known #Shabab leading #terrorists are now serving leading #Somalia’s top #Security Commanders in various #Somali #Security Agencies so, how can such known #criminals are now leading key security agencies in #Somalia? 5. Why are #European countries now acting as jealous prostitutes in #Somalia’s recovery efforts which #Turkey and other Arab countries spearheaded fraternally, and the fact is #Somalia & #Turkey are the best friends on the earth so accept it that way or die for nothing! 6. #Somalia’s Cyber Team Commanders &Somali Veterans including former living Somali Presidents, Prime Ministers, Deputy Prime Ministers, Speakers of Parliament, Ministers, Ambassadors & various Members of the Somali Civil Societies are thanking 2 the People & the Republic of Turkey 7. #Somalia has now more 19 ex- well-known #Shabab #leading #terrorists in current #Somali Government who are holding key Somali #Security agencies so, why not fire such #criminal Shabab #terrorists in Somali Government?
US sees link Between Kenyan male identity and Shabaab Recruitment
A man who had been recruited by Al-Shabaab to execute terror attacks in Nairobi and Mombasa narrating how he escaped. US State Department is offering to fund a programme which seeks to address a perceived link between Kenyan male identity and vulnerability to recruitment by Al-Shabaab. FILE PHOTO | NATION MEDIA GROUP The US State Department is offering to fund a nearly USD600,000 (Sh61,600,000) programme which seeks to address a perceived link between Kenyan male identity and vulnerability to recruitment by Al-Shabaab. “Kenyan society, while diverse in its ethnic and cultural composition, is uniformly patriarchal and highly prescriptive of gender expressions and identities,” states a funding opportunity notice posted on Saturday by the State Department’s Bureau of Counterterrorism. “Socially, males are expected to be tough, heterosexual, aggressive, unemotional and achieving.” Pressures to conform to these “ideals of masculinity” can be immense, the notice adds. Shabaab exploits consequent vulnerabilities and offers opportunities to fulfil the roles of Kenyan male identity, the programme prospectus states. A separate research study being commissioned by the State Department and cited in the notice will “explore gender identities of boys and men in Kenya and how ideals of masculinity relate to attitudes about violent extremism in Kenya”. Up to $592,500 will be available for the proposed programme that will encourage “male-to-male dialogue and training on issues of gender and encourage stronger social and familial support structures,” the notice says. The programme should involve “creative approaches to developing healthy gender identities for men and boys as a resilience against VE [violent extremism] threats,” the prospectus states. INTER-GENERATIONAL APPROACH To reflect an understanding of the hierarchical nature of Kenyan communities, the notice adds, the programme should take an inter-generational approach. “Fathers and male community leaders will be equipped to better recognise the signs of radicalisation and intervene more effectively,” the announcement says. The State Department estimates that Al-Shabaab has “several thousand members,” with a small but significant share said to be recruited inside Kenya. Eligibility for administering the proposed programme is limited to NGOs based in the United States and other countries. For-profit firms may not apply, the notice stipulates. The deadline for submitting applications is February 26. The programme is expected to run for up to two years starting June 2018 HARGAISA January 22, 2018- At least 17 people have been killed in inter-clan clashes at Dararweyne village in El-Afweyne district of Sanaag region The fighting which is the latest in a series of backlashes between rival clans, which began on Sunday morning reportedly lulled in the evening. Abdullahi Hussein Darwish, a local journalist in Airigavo town said about 17 people from both sides was killed after rival clan militias engaged in deadly gun battle. He also pointed that fighting had displaced many people from their homes. “Fierce fighting erupted between neighboring clans. Though there is no confirmed number of deaths from both sides but early reports put the death toll between sixteen and seventeen,” Darwish told Hiiraan Online. According to the journalist, forces including police and military had been deployed to area to intervene the fighting sides. There is no comment yet from the local authorities and elders in the region. The region has experienced perennial clan clashes that claimed many lives. Arguments over land use, borehole and pasture have perennially contributed to fighting among Somali community who are largely pastoralists.
Security agents are grappling with the resurgence of Al-Shabaab attacks in Lamu County. The militants have turned the county into a playground, often launching explosives attacks on government installations, security personnel, locals and motorists, killing, maiming and destroying property. The terrorists have been getting security personnel involved in Operation Linda Boni unawares and left many dead. Between May and November 2017, more than 30 police officers were killed in different attacks by the terror group. This year, the terrorists have resurfaced with fresh raids targeting security personnel and motorists using the Lamu-Malindi road. Last week, the attackers ambushed Ishakani Village, a day after killing a woman and injuring five police officers at Nyongoro along the Lamu-Malindi road. They also set two police cars ablaze before disappearing into nearby bushes, a thing that they have been doing often despite the area being near a General Service Unit camp and a few kilometres from the Linda Boni Operation centre in Witu. The centre is equipped with both air and ground equipment to counter Al-Shabaab attacks but what puzzles many is that the attacks mostly happen during the day. However, there are few reports of the militants being arrested, injured or killed by the response teams. Last Tuesday, tension was high in Ishakani Village in Lamu East after more than 100 heavily armed insurgents took over the area and preached radical teachings to the residents. They hoisted their flag at a deserted local police station before going back to their hideouts. Sources revealed that the attackers have also been conducting daily prayers at mosques in the area at will. Among areas that Al-Shabaab have been operating from with impunity in the recent months are Milimani, Mangai, Milihoi and Pandanguo where they beheaded residents in 2017. Despite the government downplaying the attacks, lives continue to be lost with security personnel deployed to escort public service vehicles always unsure of their fate. On Wednesday, Interior Cabinet Secretary Fred Matiang’i met security bosses from the region in Mombasa and assured the public that the government is on top of the situation and that it will crush the militants and that there was no cause for alarm. He termed the recent Al-Shabaab raids as “isolated cases”. He insisted the government has the capacity to deal with the attackers who have scared away tourists from Lamu, affected farming and negatively impacted on locals’ lives, education and health sectors. “I have not seen any cause for concern as it were. The isolated criminal incidents such as the one we had on Saturday are matters that we will deal with decisively as we move along because we have the willingness and focus,” Dr Matiang’i said. And speaking to journalists on Friday, Coast Regional Coordinator Nelson Marwa said the security committee was reorganising its operations to deal with the terrorists. He dismissed claims that the Ishakani police post is not operational and that police officers had been evacuated when Al-Shabaab roamed the area last week. He termed reports that the attackers hoisted their flag in the village as “propaganda” and added that security has been heightened in the area. “Ishakani is in Kenya and we have the obligation to protect it. Anyone who will try to attack that place will see lethal fire,” said Mr Marwa. The tough-talking administrator said the government is confident with the Linda Boni operation. “That is one operation that we believe in as a government and it must succeed. You can take that to the bank. We have all the units on the ground. We cannot discuss much of the operation for security [reasons] but we are on top of things,” said Mr Marwa. The operation, which is conducted by various security agencies led by the Kenya Defence Forces and the National Police Service was launched by former Interior Cabinet Secretary Joseph Nkaissery in 2015 to flush out Al-Shabaab militants hiding in the dense Boni Forest
Press Release for the On-Going Failure Reasons of the Somali Federal Government & Its Hired Ex- #Shabab #Terrorists working in Government On Saturday December 23, 2017 Somali Institute of Security Studies (SIOSS) hereby officially declare that #Somali Government has definitely failed to lead #Somalia for less than a year committing multiple illegalities, making forgeries, organizing illegal raids on civilian residences wounding and killing innocent people, suffocating freedom of expression including controlling private media outlets, swindling salaries from national forces for more than last 5 months as well as hiring ex- well-known #Shabab leading #terrorists who held before key #Shabab led Intelligence and bomb quad units as new Somalia’s top Security Officers in various Security Agencies and Ministries. So, Somali Institute of Security Studies (SIOSS) has previously advised to the Prime Minister H.E. Hassan Ali Kheyre and President H.E. Mohamed Abdillahi Farmajo to fire all ex- Shabab linked well-known terrorists from public service in government before they continue to derail and implement more deadly explosions in civilian populated areas in Mogadishu and Somalia as they have already done several times before. Well, the Somali people and the world are still waiting for the truth and investigative facts about past big explosions which killed many innocent people and wounded many more, so, the Somali Federal Government has been unable to exactly issue final fact checking investigations to track and capture all associated criminals and their collaborating Shabab terrorists who killed many innocent people and wounded many more on October 14, 2017 in Mogadishu City. Unfortunately, Somalia’s President H.E. Mohamed Abdillahi Farmajo has appointed his 1st Prime Minister H.E. Hassan Ali Kheyre whose profiled public background has more heinous darkness in local and internationally syndicated corruption as the United Nations Monitoring Group on Somalia and Eritrea has officially exposed on November 08, 2017. If the United Nations Monitoring Group on Somalia and Eritrea has officially exposed the endless corruption of Somalia’s Current Federal Prime Minister H.E. Hassan Ali Kheyre whose illegal contracts and traitor’s selfishly taking care of his personal profits then #Somalia has now the Second Traitor Prime Minister in-chief of the Current Cabinet which several Ministers have previously resigned after they could not tolerate his continuous and endless corruptions as the resigned Minister exposed publicly. In regard to the truth, Prime Minister H.E. Hassan Ali Kheyre and President H.E. Mohamed Abdillahi Farmajo seems that they will not be ready for Somalia to get free and fair elections in 2020, and as the Somali Institute of Security Studies (SIOSS) advised to Prime Minister H.E. Hassan Ali Kheyre and President H.E. Mohamed Abdillahi Farmajo to establish the Somali Judiciary Commission and the Somali Anti- Corruption Agency, both Prime Minister H.E. Hassan Ali Kheyre and President H.E. Mohamed Abdillahi Farmajo are not ready to establish the Somali Judiciary Commission and the Somali Anti- Corruption Agency for more 7 months so, what are they planning now for Somalia? It is true that 87.4% Somali people wants Somalia’s President H.E. Mohamed Abdillaahi Farmajo to fire Somalia’s corrupted Prime Minister H.E. Hassan Ali Kheyre, all ex- well-known Shabab terrorists in government, the cheating Somali Attorney-General Ahmed Ali Dahir or Somalia’s President H.E. Mohamed Abdillaahi Farmajo must resign so that the Lower and the Upper Houses of Representatives will elect new leadership to lead Somalia until 2020. Somalis are confused who are Shabab terrorists? Or who are Somali Security Officers? Best Wishes, Ambassador Dr. Badal W. Kariye (Warfa) President, Somali Institute of Security Studies (SIOSS) 1 Jidka Villa Somalia The Federal Republic of Somalia Email: firstname.lastname@example.org http://www.sioss.org/news Dear member states of the IMO, Subject: Denmark re-elected to the Council of the International Maritime Organization (IMO) The Royal Danish Embassy to The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland has the honour of forwarding a Note Verbale, in regards to Denmark’s re-election to the Council of the International Maritime Organization (IMO) in Category “C”. Yours sincerely, _______________________ Royal Danish Embassy 55 Sloane Street London SW1X 9SR Tel: +44 20 7333 0200 On Tuesday, December 19, 2017 Somalia’s ex- twice served Somali Prime Minister who is currently serving as a Somali Senator at the Somali Upper House of Representatives H.E. Omar Abdirashid Ali Sharmake spoke to the Voice of America Somali Service grilling and exposing the endless illegalities and the failure of the Current Somali Prime Minister H.E. Hassan Ali Kheyre and Somali President H.E. Mohamed Abdillahi Farmajo who ordered to attack and arrest Somali Prominent Politician and ex- Somali Minister of Planning Mr. Abdirahman Abdishakur who served between 2009 to 2010 under the Prime Minister H.E. Omar Abdirashid Ali Sharmake. Ex- Somali Prime Minister Senator H.E. Omar Abdirashid Ali has exposed that Somalia`s Shabab terrorists invested government has illegally committed traison by capturing Somali Military Veteran Col. Abdikarim Qalbi-Dhagah whom they transferred and handed over to the Federal Republic of Ethiopia without any court or the knowledge of the Somali Parliament and people, and this act was a pure traison committed collectively by the Current Regime. So, who can hide the endless traison and political failure of the Somali Prime Minister H.E. Hassan Ali Kheyre whose even Members of his cabinet exposed and resigned when they realized that they could not work in such corrupted cabinet. Ex- Prime Minister Senator H.E. Omar Abdirashid Ali has warned that it is complete illegal and unlawful to issue arrest warrant to members of the Lower and Upper Housed of Representatives and other unarmed political opponents who rejects government corruption and political derailments in #Somalia otherwise; the current corrupted government will return the country into civil war as he stated in this recorded voice. https://www.voasomali.com/a/4170325.html #BreakingNews for ex- Somali Ethiopian Spymaster Mr. Ahmed Dahir who served in the Ethiopian Intelligence is now acting #Somalia’s Attorney-general issued illegal letters to arrest politicians, Lower and Upper Houses of Representatives. Mogadishu on Monday, December 18, 2017 #Somalia’s notorious #Somali #National #Intelligence & #Security #Agency (NISA) #attacked home of ex- Somali #Minister of Planning Abdirahman Abdishakur in #Mogadishu killing #staff & #wounding him. Unfortunately, the Somalia’s Shabab terrorists invested began another form of Dictatorial terrorism in #Somalia so, be ready next moves from Somalia’s Shabab terrorists invested #government indicated to be targeting Members of Lower and Upper Houses of Representatives who filled a motion to fire #Somalia’s corrupted Prime Minister H.E. Hassan Ali Kheyre who signed illegal and hidden contracts for oil exploration before he became Somalia’s Prime Minister and after he officially became Somalia’s Prime Minister. The Truth is, Somalia’s Traitor Prime Minister H.E. Hassan Ali Kheyre did not like prominent politicians who have also previously committed the same traison not expose and share important information of the endless corruptions Somalia’s Traitor Prime Minister H.E. Hassan Ali Kheyre and Somalia’s Judiciary System is run, managed and administered by ex- Somali Ethiopian Spymaster Mr. Ahmed Dahir who served in the Ethiopian Intelligence and c before he fled from Ethiopia to the United States America. So, how can ex- Somali Ethiopian Spymaster Mr. Ahmed Dahir who served in the Ethiopian Intelligence and ex- Somali Ethiopian Spymaster Mr. Ahmed Dahir who served in the Ethiopian Intelligence still be illegal Somali Attorney-General who has been continuing illegal practices and law breaking ways in the Republic of Somalia for so long? Well, it seems that Somalia’s Terrorists Invested Government failed to lead Somalia, and now they started organizing criminal and organized crimes to shut and silence political opponents in Mogadishu and Somalia at large. Truly, Somalia’s Current Attorney-General Ahmed Dahir is sitting illegally, and we are urging to the Lower and Upper Houses of Representatives to issue firing letter to stop his endless corruption and obstruction of justice by refusing the establishment of the Somali Judiciary Commission and Somali Anti-Corruption Agency. Reported prepared by the Members of Somali Public Media Investigative Journalism for Exposing the Truth in Somalia. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ry_q02KkJsw COMMUNIQUE ON ENDING FGM IN SOMALIA FROM FGM WORKSHOP IN GAROWE, 10 – 14 December, 2017 ========== 15 December 2017, Garowe: Participants from the public and private Media in Somalia together with members form the religious leaders have convened in Garowe for a 4 day training on Ending FGM MEDIA TRAINING ACADEMY from 10-14 December, 2017. The training workshop has been co-organised by Ifrah Foundation in association with Global Media Campaign, UNICEF, Save the Children and The Puntland Ministry of Women Development and Family Affairs. Puntland 1st lady Dr Hodan Isse, an ambassador on FGM, has appealed to participants to ensure they get fully involved in raising the awareness to end FMG in Somalia and called on all Somalis to work together in achieving zero tolerence for FGM in Somalia. The topics covered during the training workshop facilitated by the trainer Abdirahman Koronto were as follows: 1. To be aware that Somalia has the highest prevalence on FGM in the whole world which is 98% of Somali women being cut with over 90% going through the extreme form of FGM. 2. How best the Somali media could redouble their efforts in raising the awareness for Ending FGM in Somalia. 3. Preparing the 2018 Media Strategic Communication Work Plan on their efforts to end FGM. 4. Implementing a national strategy for Ending FGM in the country. 5. Strengthening the relationship and cooperation among Somali media on End FGM campaign. 6. Somali doctors explained the extend of the damage FGM caused to the girls both the extreme form and lighter forms and called for zero tolerance on FGM. 1. To be aware that Somalia has the highest prevalence on FGM in the whole world which is 98% of Somali women being cut with over 90% going through the extreme form of FGM. 2. How best the Somali media could redouble their efforts in raising the awareness for Ending FGM in Somalia. 3. Preparing the 2018 Media Strategic Communication Work Plan on their efforts to end FGM. 4. Implementing a national strategy for Ending FGM in the country. 5. Strengthening the relationship and cooperation among Somali media on End FGM campaign. 6. Somali doctors explained the extend of the damage FGM caused to the girls both the extreme form and lighter forms and called for zero tolerance on FGM. After long discussion, the participants agreed on the following: 1. The participanted thanked the 1st lady of Puntland for her encouragement and endless efforts on ending FGM, Ifrah Foundation, Global Media Campaign, UNICEF, Save the Children, the Puntland Ministry of Women Development and Family Affairs and Dr Abdisamad Ahmed. 2. The participants, agreed to be united on this cause and together speak with one voice which is zero tolerance for FGM. 3. The participants agreed to send one message through the media to raise the awareness. 4. The participants prepared 2018 work plan on raising the awareness on ending FGM. 5. The participants, agreed to implement this strategic FGM work plan. 6. The participants, called on the establishment of state and federal level committees on ending FGM. 7. The participants, made promise to work together in the implementation of the campaigns and work plans that come out of the workshop in Garowe. 8. The participants unanimously condemned all activities involving harming Somali children including all forms of FGM and called on Somali society to end this heinous activity which the doctors confirmed has no benefits at all except harming immediate and long time effects on Somali girls and women. 9. The Participants, call on the Federal Government of Somalia and Federal Member States to have national polices that call the public to end FGM and implement them in 2018. 10. The participants, concurred to convene a national conference on ending FGM in Somalia on 15 May, 2018 which will bring together all stakeholders and Somali leaders to make a national call to end FGM in Somalia. 11. Finally, The participants appealed to the Somali society to commit to end FGM in all over Somalia. 1. The participanted thanked the 1st lady of Puntland for her encouragement and endless efforts on ending FGM, Ifrah Foundation, Global Media Campaign, UNICEF, Save the Children, the Puntland Ministry of Women Development and Family Affairs and Dr Abdisamad Ahmed. 2. The participants, agreed to be united on this cause and together speak with one voice which is zero tolerance for FGM. 3. The participants agreed to send one message through the media to raise the awareness. 4. The participants prepared 2018 work plan on raising the awareness on ending FGM. 5. The participants, agreed to implement this strategic FGM work plan. 6. The participants, called on the establishment of state and federal level committees on ending FGM. 7. The participants, made promise to work together in the implementation of the campaigns and work plans that come out of the workshop in Garowe. 8. The participants unanimously condemned all activities involving harming Somali children including all forms of FGM and called on Somali society to end this heinous activity which the doctors confirmed has no benefits at all except harming immediate and long time effects on Somali girls and women. 9. The Participants, call on the Federal Government of Somalia and Federal Member States to have national polices that call the public to end FGM and implement them in 2018. 10. The participants, concurred to convene a national conference on ending FGM in Somalia on 15 May, 2018 which will bring together all stakeholders and Somali leaders to make a national call to end FGM in Somalia. 11. Finally, The participants appealed to the Somali society to commit to end FGM in all over Somalia. END **THANK YOU,** **END FGM** Press Release Garowe, December 19, 2017 NUSOJ concludes a two-day Training on Conflict Sensitive Reporting and Safety of Journalists for 25 Reporters in Garowe. Attendance Certificates were awarded to 25 journalists who completed a two-day training on Conflict Sensitive Reporting and Safety of journalists held in Garowe ,the capital city of Puntland from 17? 18 Dec 2017, the second of series of training planned to be implemented across Somalia with the support of United Nation Assistance Mission For Somalia (UNSOM). The training is aimed to enhance Somali journalists? understanding of Somali conflict root-causes, drivers and triggers including structural violence that underpin and sustain the protracted community conflicts and violent extremism To develop the professional capacity of Somali journalists on promoting peace, tolerance and conflict-sensitive reporting and enabling journalists in critical ways of producing unbiased reporting In his opening remarks of the journalist training in Garowe the State Minster of Puntland Ministry of Information Honorable Ashkir Nur Puntland Ministry of Information welcomes the training of the 25 journalists in Garowe and encourage participants to take advantage of the training provided by NUSOJ with the support of UNSOM. ?I hope that when the training ends it should make concrete change to the significant work you do to the public ? Misnter Ashkir added. ?It is a great honor for to come to Garowe to conduct this training of journalists, and we would like to thank journalists in Puntland and their media association MAP and also the Puntland Ministry of Information for your warm welcome. This also encourages us to strengthen our relationship and cooperation with you.? Mahir Jama Aden NUSOJ President said. ?I believe that a lot of benefits have been gained during the two days training and I hope that we participants will serve the knowledge we gained from this training to our community? Halima Abdullahi Ali a participant from Radio Garowe said. The opening of the workshop was also attended by former NUSOJ President Burhaan Ahmed Dahir, who suggested encouraging words for journalists participating in the training Another participant, Jama Abdirahman Ahmed from Jubbaland TV , said that they have benefited the training and obtained huge knowledge, I ask for NUSOJ to continue such training as they will only boost our reporting capabilities. Secretary General of National Union Of Somali Journalists (NUSOJ) Mohamed Ibrahim Moalimuu thanked to UNSOM for their support saying without their assistance it would not be possible to conduct this training End #BreakingNews Mogadishu on Sunday, December 17, 2017 #Somalia’s notorious #Somali #National #Intelligence & #Security #Agency #attacked home of ex- Somali #Minister of Planning Abdirahman Abdishakur in #Mogadishu killing #staff & #wounding him. Dictatorial terrorism begins in #Somalia so, be ready next moves from #government Benadir Regional Administration to provide free education for 10,000 kids in Mogadishu PRESS RELEASE Mogadishu, December 18, 2017: One of the key priorities of Benadir Regional Administration (BRA) is to provide access to public education at the primary and secondary level across the seventeen districts of Benadir Region. The Benadir Regional Administration (BRA) led by Mayor Thabit Abdi Mohamed, in close coordination with the UNHCR based in Mogadishu, launched the implementation of rehabilitation and furnishing of schools within the city as well as improvement of self-reliance and livelihoods of the people. ?Our aim is to have at least one public school for each of our districts, so that children have access to free education which is imperative for the advancement of our children, it is a powerful investment and speaks to public accountability? Thabit Abdi Mohamed Mayor of Mogadishu said However, the main objective of the ambitious project is to strengthen access to primary school education benefitting 10,000 children of school going age through renovating and expanding the capacity of 5 primary schools and 1 TVET centre in Mogadishu and also to improve livelihoods opportunities for returnees, IDPs and poor host community In a bid to re-build and shape the image of the city, the project is investing in locally available skilled labour including engineers, masonry and plumbing for employment opportunities. The project is guided by community participation and strengthens community ownership. Aside from the project benefit of skilled labour, 1000 (Thousand) unskilled Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) and returnees? youth are employed in their district of their residence. All seventeen districts in BRA provided access to employment to vulnerable IDPS/returnees and host community youth. ENDS Benadir Regional Administration (BRA) Federal Republic of Somalia US Defense Secretary Optimistic About Improving Somalia AccountabilityDecember 16, 2017 U.S. Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis said Friday that he was optimistic about improving Somali accountability concerning the distribution of American aid to Somali armed forces, much of which was suspended because of corruption concerns. “I’m sure we can get this thing under control, even if it’s not for the whole, but for parts of it,” Mattis told reporters at the Pentagon. The suspension reflected the Somali military’s repeated inability to account for aid items, such as food, fuel and weapons. ‘Pause’ in assistance The massive “pause” in aid is being made “to ensure that U.S. assistance is being used effectively and for its intended purpose,” a State Department official said. It will “affect the majority of U.S. logistical support and stipends assistance” to the Somali armed forces “until additional transparency and accountability measures are in place,” Marion Wohlers, the spokesperson for African affairs at the State Department, told VOA. Ads By Google The Somali government has agreed to develop new accountability criteria that meet American standards, a State Department official said. Mattis said changing a “culture of corruption” takes time, adding that Somalia had “finally got a president worth supporting.” “We have a good relationship with President [Mohamed Abdullahi] Farmajo and his administration, but as you know, he inherited a very difficult situation,” Mattis said. Some assistance to continue Somali security force members who are actively fighting al-Shabab and receiving some form of mentorship from either the U.S. or a third party will continue to receive appropriate assistance, officials said. According to documents obtained by the Reuters news agency, the Somali military has been unable to properly feed, pay or equip its soldiers, despite having received hundreds of millions of dollars of American support. A U.S.-Somali team sent to nine Somali army bases between May and June of this year found that evidence of the arrival of food aid or its consumption by soldiers was present at only two of the bases, Reuters reported. Plans to suspend the support will be a “big setback” to the effort by Somali security forces to fight al-Shabab, warned former Somali Defense Minister General Abdulkadir Ali Dini. Dini, who worked closely with American officials in Somalia for many years, first as chief of the Somali national army and later as defense minister, said the decision did not come at the right time. “If the United States suspends food, fuel and stipends, that will hamper the war and work against the enemy and terrorists,” he said. “It does not help these operations, and it damages morale.” Somalis face ‘slave ship conditions’ on failed deportation flight December 16, 2017 Ninety-two Somali immigrants, set to be deported from the US, found themselves shackled at the hands and feet and kept aboard a plane for two days earlier this month. That part of the story is not in dispute. The Somalis left Louisiana on Dec. 7. Their flight, chartered by US Immigration and Customs Enforcement, was bound for Mogadishu, the capital of Somalia. But the plane never arrived. After landing in Dakar, Senegal, on Africa’s west coast, the one-way flight became a round trip, back to the US. Why that happened, though, remains subject to dispute. The 92 immigrants, now being held at the Krome and Glades detention facility outside Miami, are consulting with their lawyers. Ads By Google The passengers say they were denied food and water and weren’t allowed to use the bathroom. “One of my colleagues characterized them as slave ship conditions,” says attorney Kimberly Hunter, who represents two of the passengers on the flight. “ICE disputes accounts about lack of adequate food, water and restrooms — although those inadequacies are consistent with reports that we’ve had from our clients,” she says. According to ICE, the flight was returned to the US because the relief flight crew was unable to get sufficient rest. “So [the passengers] were held on the tarmac to allow the crew to rest and subsequently, due to ‘logistical concerns,’ returned to the US,” Hunter says. But Hunter believes the flight was turned back for another reason. “Somali media report that, due to protests taking place in Mogadishu pertaining to the Jerusalem decision by [the Trump] administration, the security situation just became completely untenable as far as allowing that flight to land,” she says. Hunter believes ICE will try to send the group to Mogadishu again soon. Once in Somalia, even those who might have grounds to appeal their deportation will be unable to return. “I think it’s reflective of the Trump Administration’s overall crackdown on immigration as well as reflective of their attitude towards Somalia and towards Muslims,” she says. One of her clients, Abdoulmalik Ibrahim, could, in theory, be allowed to return to the United States because his American wife is entitled to file a petition for him. “But he’s got no way to actually return now or in the near future, with the fact that the Somali travel ban has recently been allowed to continue.Who can now hide the facts of Organized #Shabab terrorists working in #Somali #government? Mogadishu on Thursday December 14, 2017 #Somalia #Shabab #terrorist suicide bomber who was also #police man went into the #Somali #Police #Academy #Heardquarters in #Mogadishu killing 15 #Officers and wounding more 23 as confirmed but the question is who is #Shabab terrorist? Or who is #Security #Agent? Many terrorists are in #government. #Shabab terrorists works in the Somali National Intelligence and Security Agency, in the Somali Police, in the Somali Immigration Directorate, in the Somali Custodial Guards, in the Somali Military, in various Somali Ministries as well as private and public partnership agencies so, who hired them? We will update more as confidential sources and final report is ready. No one can hide the truth, and it is the best time to fire ex- Shabab terrorists leaders working as Somalia’s Top Security Officers in various Somali Government Agencies now. Somalis say they were shackled and beaten on aborted ICE deportation flight Rahim Mohamed, 32, was already dreading being deported from his home of 15 years in Atlanta to Somalia, a country he hadn’t seen since he was a teenager. His dread transformed into a nightmare when he was chained to a seat on a plane for 46 hours with 91 other Somalis who say they were denied adequate food, water, medication, and even access to a restroom. Allegations of mistreatment is the latest turn for the ill-fated flight, chartered last week by Immigration and Customs Enforcement to return Somalis to Somalia, one of several Muslim-majority countries named in the Trump administration’s controversial travel ban. It’s unclear how many were undocumented or targeted for another reason, but some onboard had lived here for decades and were slated for eventual deportation because of improper entry into the country, according to the New York Times. The flight to Mogadishu left the U.S. last Thursday but was grounded in Dakar, Senegal, where the Somalis were confined on the hot plane on the tarmac for hours before returning to the U.S. under mysterious circumstances. The would-be deportees, now being held in detention centers in Florida, are talking about what happened during the ordeal. Mohamed, who came to the U.S. in 2002 as a teenager and was given pending deportation orders in 2005 after missing a court date, said fights broke out on board as passengers tried to use the bathroom. Ads By Google Mohamed said he was struck in the face and began bleeding as an ICE agent fought his seatmate. “He was choking somebody else next to my seat, and he tried to hit the other dude, and I moved out of the way and got hit,” Mohamed said. “To cover up the traces, they took his shirt.” Mohamed is also diabetic, and he said denial of medicine and movement caused his vision to blur and his legs to swell so severely he had trouble walking off the plane. Rachel Petersen, a Minneapolis-based attorney representing another detainee onboard, says her client reported a similar experience. “He mentioned they did not have sufficient food or access to bathrooms and that violence was exacted against passengers who tried to use the bathroom,” Petersen said in an email to VICE News. The American-Arab Anti-Discrimination Committee (ADC), a civil rights group, said Tuesday it had “direct reports” of the same lack of access to humanitarian supplies and bathrooms, as well as “abusive” treatment of the detainees at the hands of ICE and Senegalese security personnel. The group sent a letter to ICE Deputy Director Thomas D. Homan regarding the alleged mistreatment. “Forcing these individuals to remain restrained for nearly a day on an airport tarmac, in smoldering temperatures, without consistent access to food, water, toilets, or air-conditioning is simply inhumane and unacceptable,” ADC Legal Director Abed Ayoub said in a statement. “ICE cannot act with such disregard for its detainees, and must be held accountable.” ICE disputed the prisoners’ accounts, telling VICE News detainees had adequate access to food, water, AC, and restrooms, but that they could not disembark the plane. It did not comment on whether detainees were shackled to the chairs. “No one was injured during the flight, and there were no incidents or altercations that would have caused any injuries on the flight,” ICE said in a statement. “Claims that detainees were physically threatened are categorically false.” Petersen says trouble broke out even before the plane left the U.S. Her client broke his arm in ICE custody falling off a bed. He alerted ICE multiple times to the injury and eventually received a cast, but was put on the plane to Somalia before being able to attend his scheduled follow-up appointments. When asked about the reported broken arm, ICE said safety is a top priority and the detainee’s account was “likely false.” It also mentioned that detainees were screened upon arriving back in the U.S., with no injuries being reported or noted. But what happened on the plane isn’t the only disputed fact about this flight. There are conflicting accounts of why the plane turned around in the first place. ICE said in a statement to VICE News that a lack of “sufficient crew rest” caused the plane to do its U-turn in Senegal. A relief crew were due for rest in Dakar, but a disruption at their hotel made that impossible, so they were required to turn around and return to the U.S. Mohamed and others onboard said ICE agents told the detainees they were turning around because of a mechanical issue, not a crew problem. Kim Hunter, a St. Paul, Minnesota–based immigration attorney whose firm represents two men who were on the flight, said her clients reported hearing the same story about the mechanical issue from ICE. Additionally, Mohamed, having heard from his family in the U.S. and Somalia, believes an al-Shabaab threat to the returning Westerners caused the Somali government to refuse their re-entry. The Somali government did not respond to multiple requests for comment. One Somali news site, meanwhile, blamed the turnaround on recent protests in Mogadishu following Trump’s announcement recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. When asked about these reasons, ICE reiterated the plane turned around due to logistical problems. John Bruning, an attorney working with Hunter, says attorneys are on their way down to Florida to meet the men in the detention facilities. Mirella Ceja-Orozco, Mohamed’s attorney, says attorneys involved in the case are meeting to discuss federal litigation, and she’s reached out to Minnesota Rep. Keith Ellison for help, as many of the men on the flight live in Minnesota. Ellison’s office did not respond to a request for comment. Whatever actually happened on the flight, it’s clear that more Somalis are at risk than ever of deportation under the Trump administration. Hunter and Mohamed’s attorney reported their clients were detained during a regular check-in with ICE, a strategy that’s becoming increasingly common as Trump targets immigrants who were low priorities under the Obama administration. According to federal data, deportations back to Somalia have spiked to 521 people this financial year, up from 198 from the previous period, even though the country just experienced one of the worst terror attacks in its history, with al-Shabaab killing over 300 in a truck bombing in the heart of Mogadishu.
Graft, clanism, poor training hurt Somalia security takeover from AU December 15, 2017
After decades of civil war and state collapse, Somalia is making rapid progress towards peace, stability and prosperity. Following the 2016 electoral process and with a new national leadership, there is renewed hope for consolidating the gains made and accelerating progress towards long-term recovery and stability. While progress has been made on state-building, institutional capacity remains weak on governance, justice, the rule of law, security, human rights and delivery of basic services. Insecurity remains a central fact of life for much of the population. Last year, the African Union announced an exit strategy that would see some 22,000 troops withdraw and hand over control of security to the national army. In April this year, the Federal Government of Somalia (FGS) and the Federal Member States (FMS) reached a historical agreement on Somalia’s National Security Architecture. This political agreement is meant to have a conditions-based transition of primary responsibility of security from the AU Mission in Somalia (Amisom) to the Somalia security forces. However, mission head Francisco Madeira says Amisom will not leave Somalia until they are sure Somali forces are ready to take over. Ads By Google “We need Somalis to take the frontline in fighting the insurgency, but we cannot abandon them,” he told the Star. By the end of this month, at least a 1,000 military troops will be leaving Somalia, with the same number leaving next year. “We need to empower the Somalis to make up for these numbers,” he said, adding that troop-contributing countries have already sent police officers to replace the army. IED ATTACKS Madeira says the enemy has gained more knowledgeable personnel, so transition has to be made in a responsible manner. “Al Shabaab is benefitting from the knowhow of ISIS agents, who find Somalia a safe haven after being defeated in other countries,” he said. Despite losing its foothold in Mogadishu in 2011, al Shabaab has continued its fight. In October, it was blamed for the country’s worst-ever attack, in which a truck bombing left more than 500 dead and more than 600 injured in the capital. “Al Shabaab has no capacity for war. They wait until you are distracted and then they hit,” Madeira said. The capital has already been taken over by Somali police, who perform most of the activities, including patrols on the roads during the day and at night. “It is unfortunate that we lost so many civilians in that cowardly attack. We need to further tighten entry into the city by ensuring all people guarding entry points are incorruptible,” he said. Sector one engineer Godfrey Isingoma says Amisom still has a big job to do in Somalia, going by the number of IEDs they have encountered since January. He says 80 IEDs have gone off, causing damage in sector one area, which is covered by Ugandan soldiers, while 44 were found before they exploded, with 17 missing the target. During those incidents, 50 soldiers were injured, nine died and 20 vehicles were destroyed. “The IED threat is real since it has become their weapon of choice, cutting through all sectors,” Isingoma said. He said in October’s attack, the bomb was an IED, in which sugar, fertiliser and gas cylinders were used to enhance the damage. In January, Isingoma said they destroyed a whole lorry of explosives, which was targeting the airport. Currently, the bloated and largely ineffective Somali army is more a collection of clan militias, with various international militaries providing poorly coordinated training to different units. ‘CAN’T FIGHT THE ENEMY’ Michael Keating, special representative of the secretary-general for Somalia and Head of the UN Assistance Mission in Somalia (UNSom), says Somalia is not ready to take over security in the country due to lack of finances and long-standing disputes on clanism. “It’s not easy to transit and as much as Amisom cannot stay here forever and want the Somalia’s to take over, it will take a while longer,” he said. “Somalia forces as they are now cannot fight the enemy. They are lacking in training and infrastructure.” Keating termed the October bomb a ‘big joke’ in a ‘military’ country. “There is so much going on and I don’t think the police can handle. Imagine 500 civilians died in one afternoon. It was outrageous. That IED was very destructive. It’s a total joke coming from a military country.” He said structures need to be put in place and Somalis to start paying taxes so they can generate revenue. “Transition is dependent on money, and Somalia needs to generate its own. They need to reduce dependency and at least be able to borrow from the world to sustain them,” Keating said. He said maintaining Somalia is a very expensive affair, and the international community cannot keep providing all the money without a plan. The government of Somalia has in the past said it requires at least 32,000 police officers, but the current numbers are worrying, considering they are being mentored to take over security in the country. There are approximately 8,000 federal police officers in Somalia, with state police being slightly above 1,000. Acting Amisom police commissioner Christine Alalo said the capacity for Somali police is very low. “We have been training and mentoring them but there are no basic resources like police stations, guns, handcuffs and stationeries,” she said. Alalo said most Somalia police activities are only found in Mogadishu, with other areas lacking in all aspects. “Outside the capital, when the police arrest a suspect, they dig a hole and put them inside, since they don’t even have a station,” she said. Alalo said Somalia cannot be left in such a state, and urged police-contributing countries to provide them with more manpower as the military exits. Abdi Ahmed, a Somalia police officer we met during a night patrol, says they would want to take over the security of the country but have challenges like guns, uniform and payments. “We have families and we need money to sustain them,” he said. He said Somalis interact better with them than the military. Madeira ended by urging all partners to come together and train the Somali military and the police. “If they are ready to take over in even two years, trust me, we have no business staying here one extra day. But if they will not be ready, we will still be here for them.” Somalia revives Culture & Tourism as a way to bring peace, stability and prosperity Muscat, 12 December 2017 – HE Abdirahman Omar Osman (Eng. Yarisow) attending the 2nd UNWTO/UNESCO World Conference on Tourism and Culture in Muscat, Sultanate of Oman says Somalia can revive its culture and tourism as a way to bring peace, stability and prosperity. Over 800 participants from 70 countries gathered in Muscat, capital city of the Sultanate of Oman on 11-12 December 2017 for the Conference, an official event in the calendar of the International Year for Sustainable Tourism for Development 2017. The Conference held under the patronage of H.H. Sayyid Fahd bin Mahmoud al-Said, Deputy Prime Minister for the Council of Ministers of Oman, brought together Ministers of Tourism and Ministers of Culture as well as private sector stakeholders and experts with the objective of building and strengthening partnerships between the tourism and culture sectors and enhance their role in the UN?s 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. A Special Ministerial Dialogue addressed the role of cultural tourism as a factor of peace and prosperity. Ministers from Cambodia, Libya, Somalia, Iraq and Vietnam shared views on the capacity of tourism to support the recovery of their countries. Minister Eng. Yarisow updated participants on the strategies and plans to revive Somali culture and tourism and said “Somalia revives Culture & Tourism as a way to bring peace, stability and prosperity in the country. Somalis are resilient and entrepreneurs people and since the country is getting peace and stability we are lying down the foundations of creating an environment that is conducive so that our young people can implement new initiatives that can give hope to our people, which in turn can generate job opportunities to our people.” The Secretary General of UNWTO Dr Taleb Rifai said “In 2016 over 1.2 billion people travelled internationally for tourism purposes in one single year. By 2030, this 1.2 billion will have become 1.8 billion. Tourism today accounts for 10% of global GDP, 30% of the world?s exports of services and one in every 10 jobs. And every tourist is an opportunity for socio-economic growth, for peace and intercultural understanding, for the renewal of urban and rural areas, and for the protection of natural and cultural heritage.” Minister Eng. Yarisow believes that this is the right time for Somalia to develop policies, strategies and plans for the revival of Tourism as it is one of the largest industries on the globe. Tourism is real, it grows rapidly and it is very important for job creation to our young people and economic growth that the country is working so hard to become self sufficient in the near future. Minister Eng. Yarisow concluded his remarks to state that Somalia has a vibrant Somali Diaspora that can bridge the gap to promote culture and tourism and by bringing their friends to Somalia as a tourists is the best approach to promote our culture and tourism. Somalis love travel and tourism and that is an asset that the country has. END Ministry of Information, Culture & Tourism The Weekly Preview of Somalia’s #Shabab #Terrorists invested #Government and other Current Issues on Monday December 11, 2017 How is #Somal Government failing to lead & prospering corruption? 1. If #Somalia‘s Former #President H.E. Hassan Sheikh Mohamud failed to #lead #Somalia as you clearly said in this recorded clip #President H.E. Mohamed Abdillahi Farmajo, are you not the extremely #failure and worse than #Former #President H.E. Hassan Sheikh Mohamud? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zV35hzXqgIY 2. Durable Solutions for Somali Refugees by Heritage Institute for Policy Studies in #Mogadishu http://www.heritageinstitute.org/…/Durable-Solutions-for-So… 3. #Truly, #Somalia’s Current #President H.E. Mohamed Abdillahi Farmajo and #PrimeMinister H.E. Hassan Ali Kheyre hired ex- well-known #Shabab# terrorists as top #Somali #Government #Security Commanders? #Fact 4. How many #times in the past #week several so-called #Somalia National Forces fought in #Mogadishu for tribal #control in some areas nearby Tarbuka area in Hodan District where use all kinds of #weapons? 5. Can #Somalia’s #Shabab #terrorists invested #government deliver good #security in #Mogadishu & #Somalia? Which countries #arms & #funds #Shabab #terrorists in #Somalia? & #Why they do it for? Can you hide the facts?
The White House Office of the Press Secretary For Immediate Release December 06, 2017
Statement by President Trump on Jerusalem
Diplomatic Reception Room 1:07 P.M. EST THE PRESIDENT: Thank you. When I came into office, I promised to look at the world’s challenges with open eyes and very fresh thinking. We cannot solve our problems by making the same failed assumptions and repeating the same failed strategies of the past. Old challenges demand new approaches. My announcement today marks the beginning of a new approach to conflict between Israel and the Palestinians. In 1995, Congress adopted the Jerusalem Embassy Act, urging the federal government to relocate the American embassy to Jerusalem and to recognize that that city — and so importantly — is Israel’s capital. This act passed Congress by an overwhelming bipartisan majority and was reaffirmed by a unanimous vote of the Senate only six months ago. Yet, for over 20 years, every previous American president has exercised the law’s waiver, refusing to move the U.S. embassy to Jerusalem or to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital city. Presidents issued these waivers under the belief that delaying the recognition of Jerusalem would advance the cause of peace. Some say they lacked courage, but they made their best judgments based on facts as they understood them at the time. Nevertheless, the record is in. After more than two decades of waivers, we are no closer to a lasting peace agreement between Israel and the Palestinians. It would be folly to assume that repeating the exact same formula would now produce a different or better result. Therefore, I have determined that it is time to officially recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. While previous presidents have made this a major campaign promise, they failed to deliver. Today, I am delivering. I’ve judged this course of action to be in the best interests of the United States of America and the pursuit of peace between Israel and the Palestinians. This is a long-overdue step to advance the peace process and to work towards a lasting agreement. Israel is a sovereign nation with the right like every other sovereign nation to determine its own capital. Acknowledging this as a fact is a necessary condition for achieving peace. It was 70 years ago that the United States, under President Truman, recognized the State of Israel. Ever since then, Israel has made its capital in the city of Jerusalem — the capital the Jewish people established in ancient times. Today, Jerusalem is the seat of the modern Israeli government. It is the home of the Israeli parliament, the Knesset, as well as the Israeli Supreme Court. It is the location of the official residence of the Prime Minister and the President. It is the headquarters of many government ministries. For decades, visiting American presidents, secretaries of state, and military leaders have met their Israeli counterparts in Jerusalem, as I did on my trip to Israel earlier this year. Jerusalem is not just the heart of three great religions, but it is now also the heart of one of the most successful democracies in the world. Over the past seven decades, the Israeli people have built a country where Jews, Muslims, and Christians, and people of all faiths are free to live and worship according to their conscience and according to their beliefs. Jerusalem is today, and must remain, a place where Jews pray at the Western Wall, where Christians walk the Stations of the Cross, and where Muslims worship at Al-Aqsa Mosque. However, through all of these years, presidents representing the United States have declined to officially recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital. In fact, we have declined to acknowledge any Israeli capital at all. But today, we finally acknowledge the obvious: that Jerusalem is Israel’s capital. This is nothing more, or less, than a recognition of reality. It is also the right thing to do. It’s something that has to be done. That is why, consistent with the Jerusalem Embassy Act, I am also directing the State Department to begin preparation to move the American embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. This will immediately begin the process of hiring architects, engineers, and planners, so that a new embassy, when completed, will be a magnificent tribute to peace. In making these announcements, I also want to make one point very clear: This decision is not intended, in any way, to reflect a departure from our strong commitment to facilitate a lasting peace agreement. We want an agreement that is a great deal for the Israelis and a great deal for the Palestinians. We are not taking a position of any final status issues, including the specific boundaries of the Israeli sovereignty in Jerusalem, or the resolution of contested borders. Those questions are up to the parties involved. The United States remains deeply committed to helping facilitate a peace agreement that is acceptable to both sides. I intend to do everything in my power to help forge such an agreement. Without question, Jerusalem is one of the most sensitive issues in those talks. The United States would support a two-state solution if agreed to by both sides. In the meantime, I call on all parties to maintain the status quo at Jerusalem’s holy sites, including the Temple Mount, also known as Haram al-Sharif. Above all, our greatest hope is for peace, the universal yearning in every human soul. With today’s action, I reaffirm my administration’s longstanding commitment to a future of peace and security for the region. There will, of course, be disagreement and dissent regarding this announcement. But we are confident that ultimately, as we work through these disagreements, we will arrive at a peace and a place far greater in understanding and cooperation. This sacred city should call forth the best in humanity, lifting our sights to what it is possible; not pulling us back and down to the old fights that have become so totally predictable. Peace is never beyond the grasp of those willing to reach. So today, we call for calm, for moderation, and for the voices of tolerance to prevail over the purveyors of hate. Our children should inherit our love, not our conflicts. I repeat the message I delivered at the historic and extraordinary summit in Saudi Arabia earlier this year: The Middle East is a region rich with culture, spirit, and history. Its people are brilliant, proud, and diverse, vibrant and strong. But the incredible future awaiting this region is held at bay by bloodshed, ignorance, and terror. Vice President Pence will travel to the region in the coming days to reaffirm our commitment to work with partners throughout the Middle East to defeat radicalism that threatens the hopes and dreams of future generations. It is time for the many who desire peace to expel the extremists from their midst. It is time for all civilized nations, and people, to respond to disagreement with reasoned debate –- not violence. And it is time for young and moderate voices all across the Middle East to claim for themselves a bright and beautiful future. So today, let us rededicate ourselves to a path of mutual understanding and respect. Let us rethink old assumptions and open our hearts and minds to possible and possibilities. And finally, I ask the leaders of the region — political and religious; Israeli and Palestinian; Jewish and Christian and Muslim — to join us in the noble quest for lasting peace. Thank you. God bless you. God bless Israel. God bless the Palestinians. And God bless the United States. Thank you very much. Thank you. (The proclamation is signed.) END 1:19 P.M. EST No money came from the International Community, and the fact is here so, please do not continue your lies & swindling/stealing on bogus projectest on Somalia? Somali Government is full of #Shabab Terrorists. Wax Dhaqaallo/Lacag oo ay Beesha Caalamka siin doonto Soomaaliya ma jiri doonto, xaqiiqdana waa tan, fadlan joojiya inaad been u sii sheegtaan Ummadda iyo xaditaanka dhaqaallaha lagu lunsanaayo mashaariicda beenta ee lagu dhex fuliyo Soomaaliya. Dowladda Soomaaliya waxaa ka mid ah Rag badan oo Argagixisadda Al-Shabaab ah. 1. Where is the $2.5 billion offered funds to the Somali people & the Republic of Somalia by the International Community at the European Union Headquarters in Brussels, Beliguim? 2. How do you stop the endless jokes of foreign entities to the Somali people and the Somali Government in regard to financial support or swindling on behalf of the Republic of #Somalia? 3. Is it not another big lie that Qatar will give #Somalia $ 200 dollars to the Somali people and the Republic iof Somalia while Qatar could not even publicly provide #funds during the drought? 4. Is it another big lie that the U.S. Government will give $ 300 million dollars to the Somali people and the Republic of Somaloa when we all know that the U.S. Government could not give enough funds during the drought? 5. Is it a big lie that the Saudi Arabia promised $ 50 million to the people and the Republic of Somalia which they conditioned the Somali Government to suspend bilteral relations with Qatar and Turkey? 6. Is it that the United Arab Emirates wants the Somali Government to stop and suspend biliteral relations with Qatar and Turkey while supporting and funding various Somali so-called semi-autonomous states and corrupted politicians who failed previously to lead Somalia? Who can hide the facts? Kumaa qarin kara xaqiiqooyinka? https://undocs.org/S/2017/924 Press Release for the Endless Political Failures of the Government of the Federal Republic of Somalia On Tuesday November 28, 2017 Somali Institute of Security Studies (SIOSS) hereby officially declared that the Government of the Federal Republic of Somalia has definitely failed to lead #Somalia since on February 08, 2017 until now on in regard to its ongoing internal crisis of setting up explosive and exploiting strategies to favor foreign interests in Somalia which degraded the full support of the Somali people to the Government of the Federal Republic of Somalia, and it humiliates our current top leaders in public offices whose visionary mission looks like elusive mirage in the middle of nowhere. Truly, the Somali Institute of Security Studies (SIOSS) has previously suggested to the President H.E. Mohamed Abdillahi Farmajo, Prime Minister H.E. Hassan Ali Kheyre, the Lower and the Upper House of Representatives to establish the Somali Judiciary Commission and the Somali Anti- Corruptions Agency in order to fight and stop the endless wild and ongoing internal and external corruptions. Unfortunately, it is looks like everyone in Somali government is busy with how to forget combating corruptions in Somalia because he or she wants to get money easily without accountability, transparency and trustworthy. The Somali Institute of Security Studies (SIOSS) believes that the Somali Government must unconditionally establish the Somali Judiciary Commission and the Somali Anti- Corruptions urgently so that everyone must abide by the Federal Constitution legally. There is no a government in country around the world which does not have its Judiciary branch in place to function and carry out legal matters of any businesses so, why is the Somali Federal Government not able to establish the Somali Judiciary Commission? And why is the Somali Government is able to establish the Somali Anti– Corruption Agency? The fact is, the Somali Government was able to capture innocent Somali military veteran Col. Abdikarim Qalbi-Dhagah who fought the Somalia-Ethiopia war in 1977, and the Somali Government handed over this Somali military veteran Col. Abdikarim Qalbi-Dhagah to the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia which has been violating the norms of the International Principles of the International Law since 1991 until now on in Somalia, Fortunately, the Somali Parliament had appointing independent parliamentary committee to investigate and issue vital report about the illegal handing over of the Somali military veteran Col. Abdikarim Qalbi-Dhagah to the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, and the Somali independent parliamentary committee issued a report detailing the illegal capture and handing over transfer of the Somali military veteran Col. Abdikarim Qalbi-Dhagah which cost the Somali Federal Government to loose the full and moral support of the Somali people in Somalia and in abroad by 83.7%. Well, if the Somali Independent Parliament Committee has officially exposed the traison which the elements within the Somali Federal Government had already committed illegally and unconstitutionally, and the fact finding recommendations said clearly at the podium in a parliamentary session then is it not wise to expose, charge and fire the criminal traitors who committed crimes against humanity? Other endless political failures included appointing internationally exposed corrupted people whose mission stands for only stealing money or bringing funds to bribe free and fair elections in Somalia as well as appointing ex- well-known #Shabab #terrorists leading intelligence commanders into key Somali security agencies which they coordinated and collaborated their Shabab terrorists in the hunt to get information about government, identification cards, vehicles and list of prominent Somali politicians to be assassinated what is the mandate of the Federal Government of the Republic of Somalia? Well, Somalia’s Federal President H.E. Mohamed Abdillahi Farmajo and Prime Minister H.E. Hassan Ali Kheye had several occasions promised to fight corruption and implement accountability which failed to be fruitful when they publicly committed traison, appointed most extreme corrupted people into public offices while Somalia’s Federal President H.E. Mohamed Abdillahi Farmajo has recently learned that his hand picked-up in-law Prime Minister H.E. Hassan Ali Kheye signed illegal and secret contracts to foreign firms which decided to grab and steal #Somalia’s untapp