06 November – Source: Reuters – 266 Words
DP World extended its reach into Somaliland on Monday, announcing that it would develop an economic zone in the breakaway Somali region. The chairman of the Dubai state-owned port operator, Sultan bin Sulayem, and Somaliland’s foreign minister Saad Ali Shire signed the agreement in Dubai on Monday to develop the Berbera Free Zone, DP World said in a statement. A 12.2 square kilometre area has been earmarked for the greenfield economic zone, which will target sectors such as logistics and manufacturing. The project will be developed in phases starting with an initial 4 square km.
DP World did not say how much would be invested developing the economic zone, and cautioned further details would have to be worked out after government elections in Somaliland on Nov. 13. “We look forward to finalising the details of the Berbera Free Zone with the next government of Somaliland and look forward to our continued partnership,” bin Sulayem said. DP World is already present in Somaliland, with a joint venture controlled by the port operator winning a 30 year concession last year to develop the Port of Berbera.
At the time DP World said the port would require $442 million of investment over three phases. “Our vision is to make Berbera a trading and transportation hub for the Horn of Africa and we look forward to achieving this together,” bin Sulayem said Monday. Somaliland’s small port currently exports camels to the Middle East and imports foodstuffs and other items. It also provides some transport links for neighbouring Ethiopia, a landlocked country that has friendly relations with the breakaway region.
- Dubai’s DP World Extends Somaliland Presence With Economic Zone Project (Reuters)
- Somalia Praises Somaliland Elections In A Rare Gesture (Radio Dalsan)
- Galmudug Court Fines Yemeni Vessel For Illegal Fishing (Hiiraan Online)
- WHO Secures 2 mln USD To Boost Health Interventions In Somalia (Xinhua)
- AMISOM And SNA Troops Conduct Military Operation In Somalia’s Lower Shabelle Region (AMISOM)
- US Ramps Up Military Strikes In Somalia (IRIN)
Somalia Praises Somaliland Elections In A Rare Gesture
06 November – Source: Radio Dalsan – 116 Words
The November 13 presidential election in the breakaway state of Somaliland was discussed in the one week consultative meeting that brought together Somalia President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmaajo and regional states heads. According to an official privy to the meeting attendants praised what they said was a well organised election and a show of democracy in the region. This was the first time that Somaliland is mentioned at least positively at a high level meeting in Somalia. Somalia has in the past declined to recognise Somaliland’s. The northern Somalia region which was a British protectorate broke away from Somalia in 1991 following the collapse of the Siad Barre regime and this will be it’s third presidential elections.
Galmudug Court Fines Yemeni Vessel For Illegal Fishing
06 November – Source: Hiiraan Online – 248 Words
A court in Central Somalia’s Galmudug State has sentenced three Yemeni nationals to jail terms and fines for illegally fishing in Somalia’s territorial waters. The three-men crew received two years jail term along with fines of $2000 each. Galmudug coastal guards confiscated the trawler on October 2nd after the fishermen were caught deep in Somali waters.
The lower court in Galkayo imposed $50,000 on the operators of the boat. The judge warned that if the owner of the boat fails to pay the fine, the boat will be seized by the local authorities. “If the owner fails to pay the fine, the boat will be confiscated by the authority,” said judge, Mohamed Jama Dirshe. The court also ordered that the ill-gotten fish be handed over Galmudug authorities.
Speaking to the media after the verdict, Galmudug minister for Ports, Mohamed Adam Qalabhor commended Galmudug coastal guards for the their commitment to secure Somalia’s waters. “Sunday’s court outcome demonstrates Galmudug’s strong stance on those attempting to steal out natural sources,” said Qalabhor. Somalia’s regional states are battling to illegal fishing boats that deplete Somalia’s fishing stocks.
Somalia has the longest coastline in Africa with over 3000 KM. Since the central government was overthrown in 1991, foreign fishing trawlers began illegal fishing and ships from big companies started dumping waste off the coast of the lawless country. Last month, an Iranian captain of a fishing boat was shot dead by Puntland Maritime Police Forces after being suspected of fishing illegally.
06 November- Source: Xinhua – 236 Words
The World Health Organization (WHO) said on Monday that it has received 2 million U.S. dollar grant to support epidemic disease surveillance and emergency primary health care response activities in Somalia. WHO Representative in Somalia Ghulam Popal said the risks are particularly high among displaced people and other vulnerable populations already weakened by poverty and poor nutrition. “Lack of sufficient resources, coupled with limited access to health services and absence of timely detection and response to disease outbreaks have challenged our efforts to provide lifesaving response and prevent disease outbreaks in the country,” Popal said in a statement issued in Mogadishu.
Communicable disease outbreaks remain a major public health threat in Somalia. Nearly 5.5 million people are at risk of acquiring cholera, of whom more than half are women and children below 5 years of age. “The aid grant will help us strengthen coordination with the ministry of health and step up emergency health and epidemic disease surveillance to reduce morbidity and mortality attributed to epidemic-prone diseases,” Popal added. The UN health agency early this year reported a funding gap estimated at 4 million dollars required to maintain its life-saving response to outbreaks, drought, and malnutrition in Somalia. The grant will also support the procurement and prepositioning of essential supplies and life-saving medicines in all high-risk areas across Somalia.
06 November – Source: AMISOM – 446 Words
AMISOM troops have launched a massive operation to flush out Al-Shabaab militants in Lower Shabelle region and secure main supply routes in the area. According to Lt Col, Israel Kaheru Bagenda, the Commanding Officer of 11 Infantry Battalion of Uganda People’s Defence Force (UPDF), the operation will be conducted in phases by both AMISOM and Somali National Army (SNA) troops.
Lt Col Bagenda said the exercise was launched following information received that Al-Shabaab militants were destabilizing areas along Afgooye- Balidoogle road, Afgooye town mainly around Elasha Biyaha- Mogadishu Road and surrounding areas of Jambalulu, Baghdad and Basra. “The purpose of today’s operation is to ensure that we wipe out the Al-Shabaab elements in these general areas, and of course as you are aware that AMISOM is here to support the Somali National security forces who are already moving ahead of us in this operation,” he said.
AMISOM and SNA troops have been conducting joint operations in various parts of the country to drive out Al-Shabaab and liberate regions under the control of the militants. Lt Col Bagenda, who is also the Field Operations Commander, said the operation will be ongoing to ensure the main supply routes connecting the region and Mogadishu are secured to allow free movement of goods and services.
OPINION, ANALYSIS AND CULTURE
“But before Diblawe gets answers, Somalis can expect more drone strikes. President Mohamed Abdullahi “Farmaajo” and Somalia’s international partners are preparing for a much-anticipated large-scale offensive against Al-Shabaab in which the US, which has emerged as one of the government’s strongest allies, will most likely play a key role,”
06 November – Source: IRIN- 1341 Words
When Ali Osman Diblawe arrived in Bariire he was barefoot and winded. He had sprinted the 2.5 kilometres from his farm to the southern Somali town after hearing a barrage of gunfire tear through his small village soon after the early morning prayer. That was on 25 August. In the days prior, he and at least two others on the farm had seen what they thought was an odd-looking black bird in the sky. “There was something small and dark that was flying high over the town in the morning when we went to our farms and in the evening when we came home,” Diblawe told IRIN over a phone. “It was far away, but I thought that’s a drone, that looks like a drone.”
Anxious, he approached the local Somali National Army commander to voice his concerns over what he suspected was US surveillance of the village. He explained that although the farmers had small arms – as many do in rural Somalia, where there are ongoing clan conflicts – they were not members of the jihadist group al-Shabab. He returned to his village on 24 August hoping he had been listened to. The next morning the shooting started and Diblawe ran. When he plucked up the courage to return home he saw the bodies of 10 of his neighbours sprawled on the ground.
Standing over them were the SNA soldiers who had killed them, and the handful of US Special Operators who had orchestrated the operation. Diblawe’s warning had fallen on deaf ears. Local media first misreported the incident as a US drone strike. They later clarified that the 10 people had been killed in a joint US-Somali ground operation – confirmed in a statement issued by the US Africa Command, known as AFRICOM.
The raid came six months after President Donald Trump had loosened regulations restricting operations in Somalia, and five months after the first US soldier was killed in the country since the infamous Black Hawk Down incident in 1993. The Bariire raid exemplifies what has been a gradual ramping-up of US military activity in Somalia over the last three years, one in which drones – both armed and for surveillance – have played a central role.
This includes the first airstrike against so-called Islamic State in Somalia on 3 November. According to an AFRICOM statement, the drone attack killed “several terrorists” near Qandala, a small port town in northeastern Puntland that IS briefly occupied late last year.“In 2011 there were four or five maybe six [air] strikes and US ground operations, and that trend continued up until 2015,” said Jack Serle, a specialist investigator with the Bureau for Investigative Journalism’s drone warfare team. “But in 2015 the pace of strikes really accelerated and we’re now tracking at least 20 airstrikes and ground operations this year, which is the highest we’ve ever recorded.”