December 26, 2014 | Morning Headlines.

Main Story

African Union troops fight off al-Shabaab attack

25 Dec – Source: BBC News – 277 Words

African Union troops in Somalia have fought off an attack by al-Shabab militants on its military base near Mogadishu’s international airport. The AU mission (Amisom) said its troops regained control of the base after killing all of the militants. It said three of its soldiers and one civilian [contractor died] in the fighting, which went on for several hours. The African Union has over 20,000 troops in the country to help the weak government battle al-Shabab.

Al-Shabab confirmed it had launched an attack on the base. Spokesman Sheikh Abdiasis Abu Musab said its fighters had breached the compound’s defences. “Our fighters have entered AU’s Halane base by force through the gate and now fighting is going on inside the base,” he said. After several hours of explosions and gunfire, Amisom tweeted that the base was “safe and under control”. “The Amisom soldiers are commended for their gallant effort in controlling the situation,” it added.

Amisom spokesman Col Ali Houmed told AP news agency that at least eight militants entered the base. Three were shot dead and two blew themselves up, he said. Three are believed to have escaped. The AU base is on the edge of the compound of Mogadishu’s international airport. The base also hosts the British and Italian embassies and is used as the headquarters for United Nations operations in Somalia. Amisom said all AU and UN staff were safe. Earlier in December, at least six people were killed when al-Shabab attacked a UN convoy near the airport. Various armed groups have been battling for control of Somalia since the overthrow of President Siad Barre in 1991.

 

Key Headlines

  • New Somali Premier due to take office (RBC Radio/Radio Goobjoog)
  • Puntland journalists wrangle over widespread corruption in state media association (Somali Current)
  • Mogadishu the fastest growing capital in Africa in 2014 (Geeska Afrika)
  • Poor children get school places in Galgadud (Radio Ergo)
  • EU welcome endorsement of new Somali PM (Daily Nation)
  • US urges state development in Somalia (Kuwait News Agency)
  • African Union troops fight off Al-Shabab attack (BBC)
  • Egypt Somalia leaders to meet next week (Worldbulletin)
  • UN chief hails appointment of new Prime Minister (UN News Centre)

PRESS STATEMENT

AMISOM Condemns Attack on its Halane Base Camp in Mogadishu

25 Dec – Source: AMISOM – 222 Words

December 25 2014: The AMISOM Halane base camp, close to Mogadishu International Airport was today infiltrated by Al Shabaab elements.The terrorists, some of whom were disguised in Somali National Army (SNA) uniforms, breached the base camp around lunch hour and attempted to gain access to critical infrastructure, during which five of them were killed and three others captured.

During the gun fight, three AMISOM soldiers and a civilian contractor unfortunately lost their lives. AMISOM has regained control of the Halane base camp and restored normalcy. All African Union (AU) and United Nations (UN) personnel in the base camp are safe and secure.

The Special Representative of the AU Commission Chairperson (SRCC) for Somalia and head of AMISOM, Maman S. Sidikou has applauded the quick response and bravery of the AMISOM troops in quelling this reprehensible attack.

Amb. Sidikou commiserates with the families and loved ones of those who have lost their lives, noting that their sacrifices will be etched in Somali history. He also emphasized that the goal to rid Somalia of terrorists will continue to be pursued relentlessly and that attacks such as these only reinforce the determination of the Somali government as well the peace loving people of Somalia, with the support of the International Community in that regard.

END.

SOMALI MEDIA

New Somali Premier due to take office

25 Dec – Source: RBC Radio/Radio Goobjoog – 74 Words

The newly endorsed Somali premier Omar Abdirashid Ali Sharma’arke is expected to officially take office on Thursday. A handovering ceremony has taken place at the presidential palace. High profile guests including ministers, members of parliament and representatives from civil societies were invited to witness the  handover ceremony. Our reporter in the presidential palace says the two officials, the out-going premier Abdiweli Sheikh Ahmed and the approved Somali PM were all present at the ceremony.


Puntland journalists wrangle over widespread corruption in state media association

25 Dec – Source: Somali Current – 251 Words

Senior Somali journalist Hussein Madar has strongly condemned the reported widespread corruption inside Puntland’s Media Association Board. He said that association chairman Faysal Kalif has failed to address growing corruption in the last two months. More than 11 journalists in Bosaaso town have gathered to discuss the issue after the media association board allegedly recruited corrupt journalists assigned to run and decide its fate according to Puntlandi editor, Abdkani Abdulahi Abdi.

The journalists have touched on a wide range of issues including how to cope with the alleged exploitation from the association head and his close allies in Bosaso and Garowe, Abdkani added. “Currently [the media association] chairman is…exploiting the rights of many journalists living in Puntland. We have been watching his massive rife exploitation towards the association,” Madar told local reporters in a press convention.

“I think [the] media association of Puntland was formed to protect our unity not to divide us so we are calling its international partners to suspend their support. The chairman should figure out this growing corruption until that we are not working with him,” Garowe Online editor Mohamed Salad Haji said. At least three phone calls and five messages seeking comment went unanswered. Puntland regional state has enjoyed relative stability since 1998.


Mogadishu, the fastest growing capital in Africa in 2014

24 Dec – Source: Geeska Afrika – 168 Words

Mogadishu is now Africa’s fastest growing capital city on the eastern Africa according to the latest release from the Geeska Afrika Online Bureau of Infrastructure and Capital Investment Statistics. Mogadishu’s population is growing at around 20 per cent higher than Addis Ababa or Nairobi due to Nairobi’s competitive supply of land and Security. The Photo pictures provide assumed annual growth rates for African cities and urban areas between 2013 and 2014.

The assumptions are based on past growth/decline and forecasts by international and regional statistics organisations for Infrastructure model and investment locally. Mogadishu is making a comeback: After 25 years of civil war in Somalia’s capital, Mogadishu, rubble is being cleared for commerce and militiamen are finding new jobs. The fastest Growing Capital and Its Mayors 2010 – 2014:  Mohamed Nur Tarzan, served as the Mayor of Mogadishu from 2010 to 27 February 2014 and established the foundation of new hope. He told Geeska Afrika Online, “We strive towards peace, stability, justice and development in Mogadishu, Somalia.”


Poor children get school places in Galgadud

24 Dec – Source: Radio Ergo – 173 Words

Around 200 children from low-income and disadvantaged families in Dusamarreb district in Galgadud region have received free school places funded by local benefactors. Arwah Abdullahi Siyad, one the organizers, said the programme was aimed at sending more deprived children to school to ensure they engaged positively in society. “We renovated an old school building to launch our programme. We pay for the teachers’ salaries and manage the day-to-day running of the institution,” he said.

Nasra Nur Mohamed, one of the 104 girls at the school, told Radio Ergo’s local reporter that she was offered the free education when she most needed it as her parents couldn’t afford to pay her fees. Amina Tahlil, a mother of two, has both her daughters at the school, and said she welcomed the programme as an opportunity for children and parents as well. The school opened in 2013.  Most education centres in the region are privately-owned and charge a fee, which is a challenge for internally displaced and low-income families.

REGIONAL MEDIA

EU welcome endorsement of new Somali PM

25 Dec – Daily Nation – 162 Words

Heads of Mission of the European Union in Somalia on Wednesday welcomed the endorsement by the Federal Parliament of Omar Abdirashid Ali Sharmarke as Prime Minister. The EU called for the formation of an inclusive, representative and broad-based Cabinet that should earn the confidence of the Somali people and its partners by delivering against the priorities set out in Vision 2016.

“In the past two years, progress has been made, but with only 20 months left before elections in 2016, the tasks ahead are formidable and will require delivery of results from a committed and accountable leadership. We encourage all the political stakeholders to stand together to keep progress on track,” said a statement from the mission.

The heads of mission also said this would offer a credible framework for the EU and other international partners to continue supporting Somalia’s recovery and development. “The EU looks forward to cooperating with the new Government in a spirit of true partnership,” read the statement.


US urges state development in Somalia

25 Dec – Source: Kuwait News Agency – 143 Words

Following the confirmation of Somalia’s new Prime Minister, Omar Abdirashid Ali Sharmarke, the US Department of State on Wednesday urged the government in Mogadishu to work toward developing the state institutions. “We urge the President, Prime Minister, Parliament, and Council of Ministers to make progress toward realizing goals of critical importance to the nation, such as constitutional review, state formation, election preparations, development of military and police forces, and public financial management reforms,” Department Spokesperson Jen Psaki said in a statement.

“The United States remains committed to supporting the Somali Government and people as they stabilize and rebuild their country, and we look forward to strengthening our important partnership with Somalia,” she pointed out. Psaki added that the Obama Administration “welcomes the December 24 Parliamentary confirmation of Somalia’s Prime Minister,” and looks forward “to his prompt appointment of a capable Council of Ministers.”

INTERNATIONAL MEDIA

African Union troops fight off al-Shabaab attack

25 Dec – Source: BBC News – 277 Words

African Union troops in Somalia have fought off an attack by al-Shabab militants on its military base near Mogadishu’s international airport. The AU mission (Amisom) said its troops regained control of the base after killing all of the militants. It said three of its soldiers and one civilian [contractor died] in the fighting, which went on for several hours. The African Union has over 20,000 troops in the country to help the weak government battle al-Shabab.

Al-Shabab confirmed it had launched an attack on the base. Spokesman Sheikh Abdiasis Abu Musab said its fighters had breached the compound’s defences. “Our fighters have entered AU’s Halane base by force through the gate and now fighting is going on inside the base,” he said. After several hours of explosions and gunfire, Amisom tweeted that the base was “safe and under control”. “The Amisom soldiers are commended for their gallant effort in controlling the situation,” it added.

Amisom spokesman Col Ali Houmed told AP news agency that at least eight militants entered the base. Three were shot dead and two blew themselves up, he said. Three are believed to have escaped. The AU base is on the edge of the compound of Mogadishu’s international airport. The base also hosts the British and Italian embassies and is used as the headquarters for United Nations operations in Somalia. Amisom said all AU and UN staff were safe. Earlier in December, at least six people were killed when al-Shabab attacked a UN convoy near the airport. Various armed groups have been battling for control of Somalia since the overthrow of President Siad Barre in 1991.


Egypt, Somalia leaders to meet next week

25 Dec – Source: Worldbulletin – 149

Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi is expected to meet with Somali President Hassan Sheikh Mohamoud in Cairo next week, an Egyptian official has said. The Somali President is expected to arrive in Egypt onDecember 29 for a two-day visit for talks with his Egyptian counterpart on the situation in Somalia and Egyptian efforts to boost stability and development in the Horn of Africa country, Egypt’s permanent delegate to the Arab League Tarek Adel said.

Mohamoud will also meet with the Arab League Council to update it on the situation in the war-torn country, Adel said. Somalia has remained in the grip of on-again, off-again violence since the outbreak of civil war in 1991. Earlier this year, the country appeared to inch closer to stability after government troops and African Union forces – deployed in the country since 2007 – drove the Al-Qaeda-linked Al-Shabaab group from most of its strongholds.


UN chief hails appointment of new Prime Minister

24 Dec – Source: UN News Centre – 271 Words

United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today welcomed the Parliamentary endorsement of Omar Abdirashid Ali Sharmarke as the new Prime Minister of the Federal Republic of Somalia in a step towards resolving the country’s current political crisis. The Somali Parliament dismissed former Prime Minister Abdiweli Sheikh Ahmed on 6 December with a vote of ‘no confidence’ due to reported disputes between Mr. Ahmed and Somali President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud over political appointments.

The ouster also came amid a recent spate of extremist violence in the East African country, as the terrorist group, Al-Shabaab, continues to wage a simmering insurgency. Most recently, in the city of Baidoa, a terrorist attack left at least fifteen people dead with many more wounded. At a press briefing in New York, UN Spokesperson, Stéphane Dujarric, said the Secretary-General encouraged the new Prime Minister, the President and the Speaker of Parliament “to work together to regain momentum in the political process and to maintain a close working relationship with the interim regional administrations and emerging federal member states.”
“The Secretary-General urges all parties to work on swift establishment of an inclusive Federal Government,” Mr. Dujarric told reporters. “Political leadership is required to deliver the ambitious agenda of peace building and political transformation. [Mr. Ban] encourages the country’s leaders to redouble their efforts to this end and take steps to prevent future political crises.”

SOCIAL MEDIA

CULTURE / OPINION / EDITORIAL / ANALYSIS / BLOGS/ DISCUSSION BOARDS

“I did not introduce Jason to my family in the traditional Somali fashion. Typically how it works is, the man you intend to marry has to approach the oldest male in the family and ask for your hand in marriage. In my case it would be my older brother. After they talk, my brother would assess if he would be suitable for me and if so, would accept him. A dowry would be agreed upon (the man has to offer something of value to my family) and then a Makkah (a marital ceremony) would occur.  I explained to Jason how it worked and he agreed to do so.”

Farhia and Jason – Customs, Cultures and Baby Makes Three!

22 Dec – Source: Beyond Black & White – 1, 173 Words

Farhia and Jason were astounded that their beautiful wedding photographs went viral on the Internet.  The pics of this chic and hip urban couple are on many many Blasian and interracial couples Tumblr site as well as bridal and wedding websites. These photographs are absolutely beautiful.  I did not want to just piece together facts and display photos,  I wanted an interview.  So now I am sharing a little of Farhia and Jason’s story with you.  Farhia is very open minded and had no inhibitions dating or marrying interracially in the least bit.

Where were you born/ grew up?

I was born in Somalia, grew up in Kenya and came to Canada when I was 13. Husband was born in Canada and grew up in Canada as well.

What is your husband’s ethnicity?

He is Japanese.

How did you meet?

We met at his 23th Birthday party. I was invited by a mutual friend and we exchanged numbers at the end. He messaged me before I even walked out of the door lol.  We continued texting back and forth the entire time and he called me when I arrived home. We ended up talking till the wee hours of the morning and met up for a lunch date the following day. The rest is history. And how long had you known him when you got married?   We had known each other for a year and a half.  When were you married?  March 14th 2013.

 

December 26, 2014 | Daily Monitoring Report.

Main Story

Sharmarke takes office as third PM

26 Dec – Source: Garowe Online – 355 Words

Omar Abdirashid Ali Sharmarke, the former Somali Ambassador to the United States, has taken office for the second time as the third Prime Minister under President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud’s incumbency in two years on Thursday, Garowe Online reports. Sharmarke received the oath from his predecessor Abdiweli Sheikh Ahmed Mohamed, with President Mohamud and acting cabinet ministers present. Mohamed wished successor Sharmarke well, unveiling that the new Prime Minister would take advantage of the past experiences in governance.

The outgoing prime minister briefed the crowd at the ceremony on the achievements of his government, and the challenges that have been facing the war-torn country. Meanwhile, Somalia’s incoming prime minister hailed the work being done by Mohamed as remarkable and pledged that he will be forming a new cabinet in the coming days. Speaking at the event, President Mohamud commended Mohamed for a tremendous job during his tenure. On December 17, following a month-long political infighting and the subsequent ouster of Abdiweli in parliamentary no confidence vote, Somalia President named the career diplomat to the premiership.

Omar Abdirashid Ali Sharmarke is a Somali-Canadian diplomat, from a privileged background, and is the son of former president and prime minister, Abdirashid Ali Sharmarke who was assassinated by his bodyguard in Sool regional capital of Lasanod on October 15, 1969 during a visit to drought-stricken regions in northern Somalia. Before taking on a diplomatic post as Somali ambassador to the United States in 2009, interim President Sharif Sheikh Ahmed cherry-picked Sharmarke for premiership.

He is the son of Ruqia, the daughter of renowned Islamic scholar Dahir Ali Boss. Sharmarke graduated with BA in Economics from Somali National University (SNU), and subsequently studied at Carleton University in Ottawa, earning BA in Political science and MA in Political Economics. On September 21, 2010, the Somali envoy to the US left his top political job after bitter between him and President Ahmed. In July 2014, President Mohamud named him Somalia’s first ambassador to the United States in 20 years. In contrast to his predecessors, he will not be a novice in Somali politics.

Key Headlines

  • Sharmarke takes office as third PM (Garowe Online)
  • More than 600 students graduate from Plasma University (Radio Goobjoog)
  • Somali mosque attacked in Sweden (Dalsan Radio)
  • The speaker: in every kilometer of Somalia there is an orphan (Radio Goobjoog)
  • Al-Shabaab forcefully takes livestock under ruse of zakat (Sabahi Online)
  • Somali rebels say they killed 14 in attack on AU base (Reuters)
  • Former employees accuse Hertz of harassment and discrimination in Minnesota lawsuit (Star Tribune)

SOMALI MEDIA

More than 600 students graduate from Plasma University

26 Dec – Source: Radio Goobjoog – 284 Words

A vibrant graduation ceremony held at Plasma University in Mogadishu was attended by the outgoing  youth and sports minister Khalid Omar Ali, the outgoing higher education minister Duale Aden Mohamed , hundreds of students and representatives from all parties of the society. There were more than 670 undergraduates who came for  their Bachelor degrees after completing four years of university studies.

Hassan Kafi, the rector of Plasma University, congratulated the students who  reached their  targets, adding that Plasma University is ready to educate  youth in order to catch up with their similar generations in other parts of the world, and also fill the gap of the lost generation during the civil war. Director of the national broadcaster, Abdirahman Sheikh Yusuf, also one of the graduates speaking on behalf of graduating students urged all the students to learn as the current situation in the country cannot be solved by unlearned  youth.

The outgoing minister for youth and sports, Dr. Khalid Omar Ali, addressing the ceremony pointed out the need for additional learning institutions and universities. The outgoing minister for higher education, Mr Duale Aden Mohamed, who concluded the ceremony,  congratulated the graduating students and added that it is a pleasure to see a large number of students graduating from universities within the city. This comes at a time when more universities are opening up in the country due to the stability, and more youth are going to the educational centers, but quality of education still remains a challenge.


Sharmarke takes office as third PM

26 Dec – Source: Garowe Online – 355 Words

Omar Abdirashid Ali Sharmarke, the former Somali Ambassador to the United States, has taken office for the second time as the third Prime Minister under President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud’s incumbency in two yearson Thursday, Garowe Online reports. Sharmarke received the oath from his predecessor Abdiweli Sheikh Ahmed Mohamed, with President Mohamud and acting cabinet ministers present. Mohamed wished successor Sharmarke well, unveiling that the new Prime Minister would take advantage of the past experiences in governance.

The outgoing prime minister briefed the crowd at the ceremony on the achievements of his government, and the challenges that have been facing the war-torn country. Meanwhile, Somalia’s incoming prime minister hailed the work being done by Mohamed as remarkable and pledged that he will be forming a new cabinet in the coming days. Speaking at the event, President Mohamud commended Mohamed for a tremendous job during his tenure. On December 17, following a month-long political infighting and the subsequent ouster of Abdiweli in parliamentary no confidence vote, Somalia President named the career diplomat to the premiership.

Omar Abdirashid Ali Sharmarke is a Somali-Canadian diplomat, from a privileged background, and is the son of former president and prime minister, Abdirashid Ali Sharmarke who was assassinated by his bodyguard in Sool regional capital of Lasanod on October 15, 1969 during a visit to drought-stricken regions in northern Somalia. Before taking on a diplomatic post as Somali ambassador to the United States in 2009, interim President Sharif Sheikh Ahmed cherry-picked Sharmarke for premiership.

He is the son of Ruqia, the daughter of renowned Islamic scholar Dahir Ali Boss. Sharmarke graduated with BA in Economics from Somali National University (SNU), and subsequently studied at Carleton University in Ottawa, earning BA in Political science and MA in Political Economics. On September 21, 2010, the Somali envoy to the US left his top political job after bitter between him and President Ahmed. In July 2014, President Mohamud named him Somalia’s first ambassador to the United States in 20 years. In contrast to his predecessors, he will not be a novice in Somali politics.


Somali mosque attacked in Sweden

26 Dec – Source: Dalsan Radio – 127 Words

Police said between 15 and 20 people were in the mosque in the Swedish town of Eskilstuna, when a fire broke out at around noon on Thursday. Five people were injured in the fire; two were treated for smoke inhalation, and two suffered lacerations. Police said they were treating the fire as an arson attack. Several nearby apartments were forced to evacuate for safety. A witness said he saw someone throw an object through the window of the building, which serves as a mosque, after which a violent fire began, Swedish police spokesman Lars Franzell said. The mosque is used primarily by Somali Muslims in the town, according to the KNA news agency. Eskilstuna is located about 90 kilometers (56 miles) west of the capital city, Stockholm.


The speaker: In every kilometer of Somalia there is an orphan

25 Dec – Sources: Radio Goobjoog – 221 Words

The Speaker of the Federal Parliament of Somalia,  Mohamed Sheikh Osman Jawaari, attended a drama festival presented by orphans funded by the Qatari Charity on 25 December. The speaker said that the statistics presented by the organizers noted that there are 630,000 orphans living in Somalia  which indicates that in  every kilometer of  the country,  there is an orphan. Somalia has an area of  637000 km2.

Jawaari said that the government is responsible for the welfare of orphans in the country, article  28 and 29 of the constitution stipulate the responsibility of the government towards orphans and he promised to strengthen those points. “Our Prophet PBUH said, ‘whoever brings up orphans, his/her paradise is ready and would neighbor with me in the paradise,” said Mr. Jawaari.

Mr. Jawaari said that the Koran mentions orphans about 23 times, therefore he called on people with means to help orphans. Mr. Jawaari told the children that most of the  leaders in the history of the world were orphans, especially in the history of the Somali Air Force– leaders who were brought up in anorphanage called Ofantoore Miskiine. “An orphan is the one who an illiterate, but person who is educated is not an orphan, only that his father has died,” said Mr. Jawaari.

REGIONAL MEDIA

Al-Shabaab forcefully takes livestock under ruse of zakat

25 Dec – Source: Sabahi Online – 704 Words

Al-Shabaab says it collected $9 million worth of livestock as annual alms from residents in 2014, but religious leaders and residents say the animals were looted and the group’s methods are contrary to Islam. In a video released online last week, the militant group said it collected 6,500 camels, 100,000 goats and 2,500 cattle as annual alms to distribute to people who are suffering from drought in southern and central Somalia, but residents in those areas say they received no such donations. Sheikh Omar Abdulkadir, chairman of Ahlu Sunna wal Jamaa’s ruling council, said the wayal-Shabaab collected livestock from the public disguised as zakat was wrong and contrary to Islamic law. “They looted people’s property by force,” Abdulkadir told Sabahi.

“It is not legal within Islamic law and it is not zakat, but property that was forcefully taken.” “It is similar to when they kill Muslims and then say, ‘God is great’ and ‘Thank God’. This is one of those things that can make one leave Islam,” he said. Abdulkadir urged the Somali people not to be misled by al-Shabaab’s recent video by thinking the livestock shown was collected lawfully. Sheikh Ahmed Sheikh Dahir, who teaches a Qur’anic school in Mogadishu’s Hamarweyne district, told Sabahi that al-Shabaab continues to encourage the looting of people’s property, which is clearly against the teachings of Islam. “Distorting Islamic teaching is one of those things the public has come to expect from the al-Shabaab extremist group,” he said. “But as scholars who have a deep understanding of the religion of Islam, we want to make it clear to al-Shabaab and anyone else who thinks like them that all of the livestock al-Shabaab has forcefully taken from the public cannot be called zakat.”

INTERNATIONAL MEDIA

Somali rebels say they killed 14 in attack on AU base

26 Dec – Source: Reuters – 222 Words

Somali Islamist militants al Shabaab attacked the main African Union peacekeeping base in the capital Mogadishu on Thursday, killing 14 people, a spokesman for the group said. There were conflicting reports about how many have died in the attack which has now lasted for several hours. In the past, al Shabaab has exaggerated numbers while officials have played down losses. “Our fighters have entered AU’s Halane base by force through the gate and now fighting is going on inside the base,” the spokesman said, adding 14 of the AU contingent had been killed.

AU spokesman Colonel Ali Houmed said it would provide an update later in the day on possible casualties and fatalities among AU troops but added that three al Shabaab gunmen have been killed and AU troops were seeking to overpower another three. “They are hiding and we know where they are. We are surrounding them,” said Houmed, who said the attack is expected to end swiftly. Aleem Siddique, spokesman for theUnited Nations in Somalia, said all U.N. staff were safe and accounted for.


Former employees accuse Hertz of harassment and discrimination in Minnesota lawsuit

26 Dec – Source: Star Tribune – 755 Words

Six former employees of the Hertz Corp. at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport have sued the rental car company, saying that managers routinely demeaned their religion and fired them after imposing arbitrary prayer rules for Muslims. In addition, the suit alleges, managers walked in on their prayer services to take attendance and repeatedly held them to a higher standard of conduct and more stringent discipline than their nonpracticing Muslim co-workers of East African heritage.

Five of the plaintiffs are Somali-American, and one is of Ethiopian heritage.“Before 2007, everything was OK, we got respect and we didn’t have any problems,” said Nadif Ketibe, 32, one of the fired workers. “New managers started coming in and everything started changing, and we were upset because they were harassing and abusing us.” He and the other fired workers now drive taxicabs. Their allegations are bolstered by a memorandum issued in May by the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) asserting that the workers were “harassed and terminated” because they were black and/or Muslim and were fired in retaliation for opposing discrimination. After a failed conciliation meeting held by the EEOC in September, it notified the fired employees that they had the right to sue.

SOCIAL MEDIA

CULTURE / OPINION / EDITORIAL / ANALYSIS / BLOGS/ DISCUSSION BOARDS

“The political turbulence has frustrated the international community. Ahead of a conference on Somalia in the Danish capital Copenhagen in November, U.N. Envoy Nicholas Kay said political instability is threatening Somalia’s future. ‘The key state-building laws, commissions and processes need to be established,” he said. “This is make or break. There is no time to lose’.”


For Somalis, 2014 marked by political instability within government

25 Dec – Source: VOA, English – 642 Words

While Somalia has long been torn apart by warfare and violence, this year one of the country’s biggest challenges has come from within the government, as political infighting curtails the country’s progress, threatens security gains and disappoints the international community. A political standoff in Somalia ended in a vote of no-confidence this month.

By a vote of 153 to 80, Prime Minister Abdiweli Sheikh Ahmed was removed from office, following a feud with President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud over a cabinet reshuffle. Ahmed was the second prime minister voted out within a year. Somali political analyst Abdiwahab Sheikh Abdisamad says the political dispute between the two leaders, who come from different clans, is mostly personal. “It is not issue-based, it’s personality-based. ‘Either my way, or the highway’ — that’s what’s going on.” The process was marred by charges of favoritism, clan politics and accusations that lawmakers were promised cash in exchange for no-confidence votes.


“The beauty of Somali food is that something is bound to seem familiar, regardless of how adventurous of an eater you are.”


Behind the menu | Trip to Somalia set table for Hoyo’s kitchen

24 Dec – Source: The Columbus Dispatch – 576 Words

Before graduating from Ohio State University in the spring, Abdilahi Hassan promised himself that he would visit Somalia and, upon his return, start his own business. The 26-year-old made good on both vows. During the summer, he took his first trip to Somalia, where he spent a little more than a month traveling with his grandparents, who emigrated from the African nation.

And in November, he opened Hoyo’s Kitchen, a casual restaurant off E. Dublin-Granville Road with food inspired by his mother’s cooking. (The name itself is a reminder of that: Hoyo is the Somali word formom.) The recipes are a combination of those from Hassan’s mother, Hayat Dalmar, and Halimo Alibair, the longtime chef of Solay Bistro, the previous tenant of the strip-mall space.

Hassan wants his restaurant to be a gateway into the cuisine with which he grew up. He is hoping that Hoyo seems authentic for Somali regulars and welcoming for newcomers. The beauty of Somali food is that something is bound to seem familiar, regardless of how adventurous of an eater you are. Sambusa (one for $1.25 or 10 for $10) — a flaky, triangle-shaped pastry filled with a choice of ground beef or lamb with onions and garlic, or potatoes and peas — are reminiscent of Indian samosas. Bajiya (five for $3) are akin to falafel.

Top tweets

‏@Jubaland: Sending our sincerest condolences to the families of the three soldiers killed in the heinous attack on #AMISOMbase in Halane. #Somalia

@SomaliaEU: #EU shoulder to shoulder with @amisomsomalia & mourns those who sacrificed themselves for #Somalia & condemns unequivocally Halane attack

‏@Mr_Omarsson: Thank u for ur support! #AU Official: Al-Shabab Attacks Will Not Deter #Somalia Missionhttp://www.voanews.com/content/african-union-official-says-al-shabab-attacks-will-not-deter-somalia- … #AMISOMmission/2574359.html

‏@mohamedbashle:  At least three African Union soldiers,killed in #AlShabab attack #Somalia http://www.aljazeera.com/news/africa/2014/12/reports-al-shabab-strikes-au-base-somalia-20141225112253311677.html …

@Daudoo: On this day 2004, devastating #Tsunami hit Indian Ocean coastlines incl #Somalia. 230,000+ people died.#Tsunami2004

@SomaliaInsider: Somali-Swedish mosque hit by arson on Christmas, five injured #Sweden #Somaliahttp://u.aa.com.tr/441193

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Image of the day

Image of the day

The AMISOM headquarters is located within the high-security compound of Mogadishu airport. The heavily fortified compound is also home to the British and Italian embassies and the United Nations
Photo: AFP