Farmaajo Declares That Adaado To Continue Hosting Galmudug Parliament
23 January – Source: Radio Dalsan – 99 Words
Somali President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed Farmaajo on Tuesday made a surprise return to Adaado, and declared the city will continue to be hosting the Parliament of the Galmudug State. Adaado elders had boycotted to attend the merger between moderate Islamist group Ahlu Sunnah wa Jamaa (ASWJ) and Galmudug, that saw the State administrative capital shifted to Dhusamareb.
Farmaajo met with the Adaado traditional elders to appease them. Galmudug and ASWJ merged after months of negotiations in neighbouring Djibouti sponsored by IGAD. The President later flew to the coastal town of Hobyo where he is expected to commission the expansion of its port.
- Farmaajo Declares That Adaado To Continue Hosting Galmudug Parliament (Radio Dalsan)
- Somalia: Puntland Leader Names Director General Of Education Ministry (Garowe Online)
- Banadir Region Employees Return To Work After Two Days (Jowhar.com)
- Four Somali Suspects In Kenya 2014 Airport Blast Acquitted (AFP)
- Experts Say Empowering Local Administrations Only Solution To Developing Somalia (Veonews)
- Somali Citizens Count Cost Of Surge In US Airstrikes Under Trump (The Guardian)
Somalia: Puntland Leader Names Director General Of Education Ministry
23 January – Source: Garowe Online – 195 Words
A leaked confidential documents published Monday by GO has shed a light on the dispute and scuffle between the officials of Puntland’s Ministry of Education. The President of Somalia’s northeastern semi-autonomous region, Abdiweli Mohamed Ali “Gaas” who is accused of being behind the crises has appointed a new Director General of the Ministry of Education.
Mohamed Ali Farah has been named to the position amid “confusion and disorder” in the State’s Education Ministry which was sparked by the appointment of Yasin Abdi Saed as the State Minister on 7th August 2017. Prior to this post, Farah served as the Director General of Justice Ministry. According to the leaked information, Saed, a close ally of the president is considered to be the root cause of the current deadlock engulfing the Education Ministry as he has been given more authority.
The rift which is the worst ever recorded in history has also prompted the suspension of the former Director General by the deputy and State Ministers a few days ago. Puntland President Abdiweli Mohamed Ali “Gaas” whose term is expiring next year is blamed for a widespread corruption and nepotism largely impacted the entire his government institutions.
Banadir Region Employees Return To Work After Two Days
23 January – Source: Jowhar.com – 131 Words
Workers at the Banadir regional administration resumed duties after two days of blockade at their office by the military following the sacking of the city’s former Mayor, Thabit Abdi Mohamed. The security forces were removed from the building and it is now under the control of the national police.
During the two days, the security forces blocked access to the building as well as the area surrounding it and denied the employees access to their offices. The deployment of the security officers at the Banadir regional administration office was part of government efforts to resolve the crisis in Mogadishu. This has led to a halt in the operations of the Banadir regional administration. Former Mayor, Thabit Abdi Mohamed is expected to be in office today to handover to the newly appointed Mayor of Mogadishu, Abdirahman Osman (Yarisow).
22 January – Source: AFP – 253 Words
Four Somali men charged over an explosion at a coffee shop at Nairobi’s international airport in 2014 were acquitted Monday (Jan 22) due to lack of evidence. The men had denied they were members of the Somalia-based Al Shabaab Islamist group and had carried out the attack, which came four months after militants struck the capital’s Westgate mall, killing at least 67 people.
There were no casualties in the blast at Jomo Kenyatta International Airport, which police initially blamed on a “loose light bulb” falling into a waste paper basket. After a bullet-ridden car containing a dead body and explosives was found the following morning at a housing estate near the airport, they were obliged to change their story.
Magistrate Roselyn Oganyo said the prosecution had failed to prove the charges against Hassan Abdi Mohamed, Mohamed Osman Ali, Yusuf Warsame and Garad Hassan Fer. “Having considered the evidence adduced before court I find that the prosecution failed to prove its case against each of the accused persons beyond any reasonable doubt,” she ruled.
The magistrate acquitted them of more than 12 counts they faced, including being unlawfully present in the country and possessing explosives. Kenya faced a series of attacks after sending troops into southern Somalia in October 2011 to help fight the Al-Qaeda-linked Shabaab. In its bloodiest single attack on Kenya so far, Shabaab gunmen raided a university in Garissa in April 2015, killing 148 people, most of them students. Since then most attacks have targeted the remote northeast region bordering Somalia.
23 January – Source: Veonews – Video – 3:08 minutes
Somali president has embarked on a meet the people tour in parts of the country as he seeks to empower regional governments by initiating key infrastructure and development projects. The move is part of expanding the federal government’s efforts to ensure locals have access to basic needs. CGTN’s Abdulaziz Billow reports from central Somalia on how this system of governance is changing lives there.
OPINION, ANALYSIS & CULTURE
“Between 16 and 17 August, the US conducted three “precision airstrikes against al-Shabaab militants, killing seven fighters” in the Middle Juba region, where there has been heavy fighting between government forces and militants, officials said.”
23 January – Source: The Guardian – 1556 Words
Dozens of civilians have been killed and wounded in Somalia as US-led airstrikes against Islamist militants increase to unprecedented levels, a Guardian investigation has found, raising fears that Washington’s actions could bolster support for extremists. The escalation in strikes is part of the Trump administration’s broader foreign policy strategy in Africa and the Middle East. There have been 34 US airstrikes in Somalia in the last six months – at least twice the total for the whole of 2016. Regional allies active in the campaign against Islamic extremists in the east African country have conducted many missions too. These appear to be the most lethal for civilians.
Almost all the strikes target al-Shabaab, the al-Qaida affiliated extremist movement fighting to establish an Islamic state in Somalia for more than a decade. The Guardian collected and investigated scores of reports of airstrikes over the last 12 months, checking claims in local media with western and local officials, medical staff, witnesses and relatives of victims. In five attacks since July, more than 50 civilians appear to have been killed or injured. At least two involved US aircraft.
Further casualties are likely to have been caused by other strikes but have gone unreported. Five civilians were killed and two wounded in an airstrike on a village on 6 December, witnesses and hospital staff said. In another incident, in October, residents and medics reported up to eight civilians being injured in an airstrike during fierce fighting in Lower Shabelle province. The previous month, four herders were injured when a water hole near the border with Kenya was bombed.
In August, seven members of a family including small children died in a strike in southern Jubaland, relatives said. Officials said all those killed were extremists. A month earlier, four people, including three children, were killed and eight wounded in an airstrike on a village near the southern port city of Kismayo, relatives and witnesses said. The strikes have also killed large numbers of livestock and caused extensive damage done to agricultural infrastructure. Though the intensity of the recent strikes is unprecedented, the use of air power in Somalia has been steadily increasing since before Donald Trump became US president.
A recent UN analysis described 74 airstrikes between January 2016 and October 2017, resulting in 57 civilian casualties. Only 14 of these strikes were “US supported”, and the report blamed Kenyan forces in Somalia for 42 of those casualties. Kenya contributes troops and three attack helicopters to Amisom, the 22,000-strong African Union military and policing mission in Somalia. Kenyan forces are also believed to have conducted their own strikes in border areas, though Nairobi denies this.
Most airstrikes hit deep into the territory held by Islamist militants and confirmation of claims of civilian casualties, even when made by relatives of those hurt or killed, is difficult. Some of the dead or injured may be fighters with armed tribal militias who are technically civilians, though sometimes align with the militants. Al-Shabaab also routinely exaggerate the number of civilian casualties, and communities are sometimes tempted by the prospect of compensation to support such claims.
The sudden increase in the use of air power in Somalia by the US come after the relaxation of guidelines intended to prevent civilian casualties and a decision by the Trump administration to give local military commanders greater authority in ordering attacks. A huge bomb that killed 500 people in Mogadishu in October – the latest in a series to target the Somali capital – has added extra impetus to the new US efforts. Senior humanitarian figures have expressed growing concerns about the potential humanitarian cost of the offensive.
@MoPIED_Somalia: National Development Council meets today in #Mogadishu ahead of the SDRF session which will take place tomorrow. @MoPIED_Somalia is chairing & All FMS Planning Ministers are attending.
@HarunMaruf: The ancient coastal town of Hobyo prepares today to welcome the first visit by a Somali president in several decades. (Do you know the last time a Somali president visited there? Heard it was over 40 years ago?).
@HarunMaruf: A Somali government soldier was killed, several others injured after Al-Shabab ambush near Bardale, Bay region, Monday: reports
@VLorenzoEU: A tour of Elman safe house to understand the rehabilitation program of children in armed conflict. Inspiring young men full of hope and plans for the future. A great example of what can be done! @unicefsomalia
IMAGE OF THE DAY
President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed (Farmaajo) with regional state President Ahmed Duala Geele (Haaf) arrived in city of Hobyo.