19 May – Source: Xinhua – 251 Words
Some 30,600 Somalis have reportedly returned to Somalia from Yemen since the beginning of war in Yemen in 2015, the UN refugee agency said on Friday. The UNHCR said an increasing number of Somalis are approaching the agency for assistance to support their return, citing safety concerns and limited access to services in Yemen. “UNHCR is now providing some support to those choosing to return on their own,” the UN agency said in a statement. “In 2017, UNHCR is able to assist up to 10,000 Somali refugees who have made the choice to return, based on the information received at Return Help Desks on conditions in Somalia and the assistance package that is being offered both in Yemen and Somalia,” it said.
Yemen has been both a destination and a transit hub for refugees and migrants from the Horn of Africa and beyond. The overwhelming majority of refugees in Yemen, 91 percent or some 255,000, are Somali refugees. The UNHCR said its humanitarian operations in Yemen will continue to provide support to refugees who remain in Yemen. It said most Somali refugees registered in Yemen originate from Banadir, Lower Shabelle, Bay, Middle Shabelle and Woqooyi Galbeed regions in Somalia. In Yemen, most reside in Aden, Sana’a and Lahj governorates, the latter of which is where Yemen’s only refugee camp, the Kharaz refugee camp, is located. The UNHCR said most refugees opt to return to Mogadishu, in the anticipation that assistance and services will be more accessible and available.
- Over 30000 Somalis Return From Conflict-hit Yemen: UNHCR (Xinhua)
- Hiddig: There are no dissident MPs (VOA Somali)
- President Silanyo Says Removal of Somalia’s Arms Embargo Can Create Problems (Goobjoog News)
- Crown Prince Orders Delivery Of Ramadan Food Baskets To Somalis (Asharq Al-Awsat)
- From Somalia To America And Finding A Home In Minnesota (Keyc News)
Hiddig: There are no dissident MPs
19 May – Source: VOA Somali – 203 Words
Chair of a newly formed forum composing of dozens of Somali MPs has denied media reports that the forum was formed to launch opposition campaigns against Prime Minister Khayre’s nascent government. In an interview with VOA Somali shortly after holding a press conference in Mogadishu, MP Abdirashid Hiddig said the main objective of establishing the forum is to fight clannism and contribute to the process of forming political parties in the country. “We want to fight the clan-based 4.5 power sharing formula in the country. Meanwhile, every MP is required to join a political party within two years, we are therefore working on reaching those goals,” said Hiddig. When asked about the number of MPs allied in the forum, he said over 100 MPs have so joined the group with many others joining by the day. He further said they have no plans to table a motion against the top leaders of the government in the near future, but are instead ready to help them move the country forward. Leading MPs in the forum are said to be former government officials who failed to secure positions in the new government and members of political parties defeated in the recently concluded electoral process.
President Silanyo Says Removal of Somalia’s Arms Embargo Can Create Problems
18 May – Source: Goobjoog News – 148 words
Somaliland President Ahmed Mohamed Silanyo said that the arms embargo on Somalia should not be removed. Speaking at the an event commemorating the 26th anniversary of Somaliland independence, President Silanyo said that such removal could bring potential new problems back in the horn of Africa. “The Somali people are separated and if the arms embargo is removed, it would lead to regional insecurity and renewed crisis that could create conflict as well as build friction amongst the Somali people, thus leading to negative consequences,” he said.
The president warned saying Somaliland was no longer part of Somalia and the two countries should continue to live next to each other as peaceful neighbours. “We will not tolerate anyone who tries to intervene in our country, Somalia is a neighboring country and we should live side by side peacefully. Somaliland broke away from Somalia but is not yet recognized internationally.
19 May – Source: Asharq Al-Awsat – 278 words
Crown Prince Mohammed bin Nayef bin Abdulaziz, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Interior, has directed the General Supervisor of Saudi Relief Campaigns, Saudi National Campaign to Support Somali People, to distribute 40,000 Ramadan food baskets to the people in need in Somalia. The crown prince also adopted the public plan to implement civil defense works in case of emergencies in the capital during the month of Ramadan. He ordered all public institutions to execute this plan in cases of emergency to guarantee the safety of guests.
Director General of Civil Defense Lieutenant General Suliman al-Amr expressed gratitude and appreciation to the crown prince for his support and follow-up of the plan’s implementation as well as for backing its goals in ensuring safety of Umrah performers. Amr stated that there is full coordination with public institutions taking part in the execution of civil defense works plan to make use of potentials of all parties in implementing evacuation, rescuing, sheltering and emergency services.
Regional Director of the Saudi National Campaign for Relief of Somali People Sa’ad al-Swayed said that the office of the national campaign was directed to quickly complete the project and carry out required preparations before Ramadan to fulfill the crown prince’s orders. Swayed ensured the government’s keenness to stand by the Somalis in times of distress and to work on providing them with relief aid, especially at the current circumstances. The Saudi National Campaign for Relief of Somali People was launched six years ago and has so far provided aid to the Somali people in medical, education, relief and infrastructure fields. The aid reached a total worth SAR590,411,134 million (USD157,442,969 million).
OPINION, ANALYSIS AND CULTURE
“After ten years, I can see a lot of kids that graduate high school, even college. I know that almost three of them now, they have a business here because when I came here, maybe there were ten, 12 years old. Now they graduated, and they are giving back to the community what they learned and now they also in the community too, so those kids can be the bridge,” Abdulkadir said,
19 May – Source: Keyc News – 1,115 words
Minnesota has one of the largest Somali refugee populations in the country. But it wasn’t long ago the first Somali family called Mankato home.For a long time, it was home. Chairman of Somali Community Barwaaqo Organization Hussein Jama said, “I live a good life. I was working with the White House, like say the White House here. We call it Villa Somalia. The president is there. So, I was working there as a financial. I was doing Department of Finance over there for 10 years.” Then in 1990, everything changed, with a civil war that continues today, and with a government job, that made Hussein Jama a target. Hussein Jama said, “I left from my family, and I get a ticket to come to Cairo.” Hussein eventually made his way to the United States, but it was alone. Back in Somalia, his family made their way to Kenya, with the first attempt by boat claiming the lives of several family members before finally finding refuge. Executive Director of Somali Community Barwaaqo Organization Fardousa Jama said, “We took a car and then part ways we walked, right, and the journey in itself isn’t something any human should go through because you make sacrifices, you make … you lose a lot.” For the almost five years, Hussein worked to bring his family to him.
It was the help of a Good Samaritan who assisted Hussein, financing his family’s reunion in 1995, filled with joy and a lot to learn.Fardousa Jama said, “He missed a lot. He was just a stranger we came to live with.” In the years that followed, they moved from Tennessee to Minnesota and in 1997, they came to call Mankato home as Hussein attended MSU–Mankato. Hussein Jama said, “There no Somali people living in Mankato. We are the first to come to here.” But being the first wasn’t always an easy transition, especially for a young teenager going to school. Fardousa Jama said, “You don’t see no other person who looks like you, sounds like you, dress like you, acts like you. Kids would ask did I grow up with monkeys, or do I taste like chocolate.” Even with the bad, they say their family’s found a good life and community here, and in the early 2000s, a few other Somali refugee families joined the Jama’s in calling Mankato home. The primary reasons are schools, jobs and a lower cost of living. Program Manager at YWCA of Mankato Ayan Musse said, “Refugees, they had to be forced out of their home. It was not a choice. Either by war or natural disaster, or political persecution. So, some of the individuals we have in our community, they have no other choice but to be here, but however, in the United States, however, they’ve chosen to live in Mankato.” In the two decades since the Jama’s arrived, hundreds of Somali families have built a life in the Greater Mankato area, even though the start is often the part. Musse said, “First struggle would be language. Could you image going to a country where you don’t speak the language, read or write and new culture, so culture shock.” To smooth the transition, some of the first Somalis to call Mankato home are lending a hand to help those who are new arrivals to adjust to a new life.
Musse said, “Either new to the country or new to the community, help them with their basic needs and try to connect them with the resources in the community so they can better off their lives.” Ayan Musse, who’s lived in Mankato since 2002 does that work through the YWCA, helping the larger population of immigrants and refugees. At MRCI WorkSource, Mohamed Abdulkadir who’s moved here 15 years ago and lived the last ten years in St. Peter, he focuses on helping with employment beyond filling out applications, by bridging employer and employee. MRCI WorkSource Refugee Training Consultant Mohamed Abdulkadir said, “I was working to help them get a job and train them and teach them, guide them, coach them, all that thing. Even when they get a job, so we can provide the organizations that help, we can provide them interpreting, we can participate for the orientations.” Employers reach out to Abdulkadir to understand the cultural differences and provide ways to meet their needs. Abdulkadir said, “One small issue come up like when people are praying or fasting time, they don’t know how to deal with that, call us and say this is what we have, can you come to me and discuss? Then we find the solution.” And for Fardousa Jama, she saw the need for assistance on her doorstep.
@HarunMaruf: 91% of refugees in Yemen are Somalis, most reside in Aden, Sana’a and Lahj governorates, where the only refugee camp, Kharaz, locates: UNHCR
@HarunMaruf: 30,000+ Somalis have returned to Somalia from Yemen since the beginning of the current war, 10,000 have registered to return in 2017: UNHCR
@alihwarsame: Hon. Ali H. Warsame Retweeted Mo Shire
Yesterday it was welcome event for Governor/Mayor of #Mogadishu & today it’s his turn to do the job effectively/efficiently. Let us wait/see
@HarunMaruf: Somalia security chiefs: L-R: Liban Yarow – military tribunal chief; Abdulhakim Said – police; Sanbalolshe – intel; Jimale Irfid – army.
IMAGE OF THE DAY
MPs allied in the newly formed Horusocod Forum hold press conference in Mogadishu on Thursday.
PHOTO: Hiiraan Online