09 May- Source:VOA News- 325 Words
At least 13 people were killed in fighting Tuesday between government forces and Islamist insurgents in southwestern Somalia, according to witnesses and officials.The fighting began early in the day when insurgents attacked the Somali National Army base in the district of Goofgaduud, about 35 kilometers outside, Baidoa, 250 kilometers (160 miles) northwest of Mogadishu.“About 100 heavily armed militants attacked the base with rockets and heavy machine-guns. The fighting lasted about an hour. The government forces in the camp were forced to retreat, but came back to their base immediately,” a witness told VOA on the condition of anonymity.
Another witness said he saw the dead bodies of four militants and three uniformed government soldiers lying in the streets of the district.During the fighting, the militants ambushed a government forces convoy from nearby Baidoa town heading to the camp for reinforcement killing at least six government soldiers, a Somali military commander have confirmed to the VOA.“The militants ambushed a convoy of government soldiers heading to Goofgaduud as a reinforcement. First, they attack with a land mine and then gunfire. They killed six soldiers and wounded two, and seized one of our military vehicles,” the commander told VOA on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak.
- At Least 13 Killed In Somalia Fighting (VOAnews)
- Denmark Joins Combat Against Somalia Piracy (Shabelle News)
- Somalia In Mourning As Football Legend Hussein Ali Abdulle Passes Away (Radio Dalsan)
- Somalia EU Mull Ways of Enhancing Maritime Security (Xinhua)
- Egyptian Prime Minister to Attend London Conference On Somalia (Ahram News Agency)
- Instruments of Pain (III): Conflict and Famine in Somalia (Reliefweb)
Denmark Joins Combat Against Somalia Piracy
09 May – Source: Shabelle News – 256 words
The Danish government is deploying a Challenger airplane to support maritime security in the Horn of Africa. Additionally, the government decided that Denmark will again make a Challenger airplane available for the Mediterranean efforts to monitor EU’s outer borders.“I am pleased that once again, Denmark can play a part in maritime security in the Horn of Africa region. The waters of the region play a vital role in international commercial shipping, and Denmark has previously won great international recognition for our role here,” said Anders Samuelsen, Denmark’s minister for foreign affairs.
The Danish air detachment will be deployed for about 30 days from the middle of May 2017 to the middle of June 2017. During its deployment, the detachment will be tasked to support Task Force 150 by gathering intelligence, which can contribute to on-going surveillance and building situational awareness in the Indian Ocean. At the time of deployment, Task Force 150 will be under French leadership.Danish warships and patrols had been helping NATO keep Somali pirates at bay in the Indian Ocean for nine years through to late last year, capturing 295 suspected pirates, of which 50 were forwarded for prosecution in other countries.The maritime security situation in the Horn of Africa has become intense again after a resurgence of Somali pirate attacks in the region for the past two months. According to a recent report by the International Chamber of Commerce, pirates and armed gangs attacked about 43 ships and captured 58 seafarers in the first quarter of the year 2017.
While the phenomenon appears to be spiking worldwide, including off the coast of Nigeria and the Southern Philippines, the Gulf of Aden and the coast of Somalia feature strongly in the latest statistics. Due to the decline in successful hijackings from 2008 in the Horn of Africa, a NATO naval force was pulled out of the region at the end of 2016. The US Navy has suggested a severe drought in the region is partially responsible for the return of piracy in the region.
Somalia In Mourning As Football Legend Hussein Ali Abdulle Passes Away
09 May-Source:Radio Dalsan – 216 Words
Somali football legend, a former ocean stars head coach, Hussein Ali Abdulle, has died in Mogadishu on Tuesday Somali Football Federation announced in a statement.The legend passed away at his home in the capital Mogadishu after midnight on Tuesday. He was 71 years old and had suffered from long illness.The late Abdulle was one of the country’s most renowned footballers in 1960s and 1970s and represented Somalia in many international football competitions.“Our football family is in shock and sadness today. I would like to extend my condolence to his family and to the entire Somali football family members. For the past two years we have been closely aware of his situation, he was a beloved one in our football family. We pray for him to rest in peace” SFF president said.“With the death of Hussein Ali Abdulle, Somalia has missed one of the great men in our football history. He was one of the football veterans who helped to prevent Somalia football from collapsing after the country fell into anarchy in 1991” Somali Football Federation (SFF) president, Abdiqani Said Arab, said in a statement on Tuesday.“He left behind a full legacy for us. He will always be remembered in our football history” SFF president, Abdiqani Said Arab, noted in his statement.
09 May – Source: Xinhua – 438 words
The Somali government and the European Union (EU) have held talks on strengthening the Horn of Africa nation’s maritime security to help deter piracy along the coastline. Somali Prime Minister Hassan Ali Khaire and EU Ambassador to Somalia Veronique Lorenzo, who were hosted by the EU Naval Force aboard the flagship ESPS Galicia on Monday, discussed how the EU can best support the government to take full control of its maritime security, which is essential for long-term stability of the country. “We have been a supporter of the security sector in Somalia and maritime safety is a central pillar often overlooked,” Lorenzo said in a statement issued on Tuesday.The discussions highlighted the cooperation existing between EU and the Somali government in policing Somali waters. “The protection of the Somali coast and over 3,300 kilometers of it, is central not only for the fisheries sector but also for the commercial shipping industry; and in general for the private sector, who wish to have some degree of stability, of security, to be able to invest in such a sector with wealth of prospects,” Lorenzo added.
The EU naval force, a counter-piracy military operation off the coast of Somalia has been protecting Somalia bound ships, belonging to the UN World Food Programme and the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM). Discussions between PM Khaire and EU officials also focused on counter-piracy operations and recent piracy incidents on the Indian Ocean.During the talks, Khaire, who was also led on a guided tour aboard the ESPS Galicia, which is used in anti-piracy operations, urged the EU Naval Force to intensify counter-piracy military operations, by deploying more ships in the waters; and increasing air patrols, in light of the recent piracy incidents.
“We have also raised the issue of joint collaboration in order to devise ways to end the illegal fishing in Somali waters by foreign vessels. So, we have agreed to continue discussions on how we can protect the Somali natural resources,” he said.
Major General Robert Magowan, the EU Naval Force Operations Commander, Operation Atalanta which started in June 2016, said they have thwarted attempted pirate attacks. Maghowan said the forces would continue to sustain the momentum of the operation, in order to deter and suppress piracy on the high seas.”We will continue to deter piracy for as long as we are here. That is something I am very clear about. It is also important for us to continue to reassure our maritime industry, that we will continue to suppress and deter piracy and ensure they deliver best management practices as they move in this region,” he said.
09 May – Source: Ahram News Agency – 225 Words
Egypt’s Prime Minister Sherif Ismail is set to fly to the UK on Wednesday to participate in the London Somalia Conference 2017, at which senior government officials from various nations will discuss ways of supporting the African country.According to an Egyptian cabinet statement, Prime Minister Ismail is to represent Egypt at the international conference, which runs from 10 and 11 May, in collaboration with the British and Somali governments and the United Nations. The Egyptian PM’s participation comes “as part of Egypt’s aspiration to support Somalia, which witnessed presidential elections early 2017, and help it achieve political stability and proceed with economic development,” the cabinet statement read.
In February 2017, Somali MPs elected 55-year-old former prime minister Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed as the country’s new president.The conference, which is to be inaugurated by British Prime Minister Theresa May, will involve heads of state from across Africa, as well as representatives from several international organizations.The first London Somali Conference took place in 2012, in response to rising instability in the African country. Security had been undermined by the actions of terrorist group Al-Shabab, while large sections of the population were facing famine.This year’s conference aims to “agree on a new international partnership needed to keep Somalia on course for increased peace and prosperity by 2020,” according to a UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) statement.
“Chronic conflict is preventing effective response to Somalia’s prolonged drought and humanitarian crisis. This special briefing, the third in a series of four examining the famine threats there and in Yemen, South Sudan and Nigeria, urges Somalia to improve governance and promote countrywide clan reconciliation to end the war”
09 May- Source:Reliefweb – 584 Words
History is at risk of tragically repeating itself. Once again, conflict-wracked Somalia is faced with mass hunger, just six years after a man-made famine took the lives of 250,000 people, mostly children, and 25 years after another killed 300,000, triggering a U.S. and UN intervention without which many more would have perished. An estimated 6.2 million people – half the country’s population – are in dire need; over three million are in a “crisis” or “emergency” situation, faced with death due to hunger and disease. While governmental and international responses have been relatively swift and relief efforts better coordinated (in part, because of lessons learned from the 2011 famine), many former limitations and challenges remain.
Today, Somalis are starving because funding is insufficient and because access denial and insecurity impede delivery; most of all, they are starving because chronic conflict has destroyed their savings and ability to cope with periodic drought. The government and its international partners must tackle these immediate impediments and do more to stabilise the country lest yet another famine loom in the not-too-distant future. As in 2011, the epicentre of the current humanitarian crisis is south-central Somalia where Al-Shabaab, a violent Islamist insurgency, and localised clan conflicts have compounded the drought’s impact, undermined subsistence farming and cereal production, and led to crippling inflation and skyrocketing food prices, as well as mass displacement. Pockets in northern Puntland and Somaliland have also been badly hit, though the situation is far less grim than in the south.
Greater international assistance is urgently needed but will not be enough. A central cause of the crisis is access restrictions, provoked all at once by Al-Shabaab-orchestrated violence and insecurity, increased numbers of checkpoints on major aid supply routes, bureaucratic impediments and hefty illicit fees that both limit reach and increase delivery costs. Muslim community leaders and clerics should seek to persuade Al-Shabaab to allow access to areas under its control. But access restrictions are also the work of clan militias and disgruntled government and federal state forces engaging in predatory behaviour and routinely erecting barriers on major highways to extort money. The federal government and federal member states need, therefore, to pressure them too: through negotiations with clan militias if feasible, by considering military options to dismantle the checkpoints and provide armed escorts to relief convoys if necessary. And the federal government and federal member states should ease official impediments and red tape, which further constrain access.