October 1, 2018 | Daily Monitoring Report

Main Story

Car Bomb Hits EU Convoy In Somalia, No Casualties – Police

01 October – Source: Reuters – 130 Words

A suicide car bomb hit a European Union armoured convoy in Somalia’s capital Mogadishu on Monday, damaging one vehicle but causing no casualties, police said.  A Reuters witness saw men towing their damaged vehicle after the explosion hit its rear end. The armoured vehicles had Italian and EU flags on them. It was not clear who was responsible for the blast but Somalia’s Islamist group al Shabaab frequently carries out attacks in the Horn of Africa country.

The al Qaeda-affiliated militants want to topple Somalia’s Western-backed central government and also impose their own rule based on their strict interpretation of Islam’s sharia law.  The European Union is one of the major sources of funding for the African Union-mandated peacekeeping force AMISOM which helps defend Somalia’s central government against the Islamists.

Key Headlines

  • Car Bomb Hits EU Convoy In Somalia No Casualties – Police (Reuters)
  • President Farmaajo Is Ready For Talks With Somaliland – Deputy Prime Minister (Jowhar)
  • Allied Forces Launch Joint Operations Against Al-Shabaab In Hiiraan Region (Halbeeg News)
  • Haysom’s 1st Take: Unity Between FGS And FMS Key To Progress In Somalia (Goobjoog News)
  • Somali Army Kills 5 Al-Shabab Militants In Southern Region (Xinhua)
  • My Sister Was Crying And Screaming And I Was Too’: FGM Survivor Fighting To End Practice That Left Her Unable To Have Children (The Independent)


President Farmaajo Is Ready For Talks With Somaliland – Deputy Prime Minister

01 October  – Source: Jowhar  – 152 Words

Somali Deputy Prime Minister Mahdi Mohamed Guled has said the Federal Government is ready to resume talks with Somaliland authorities. Mahdi Guled, who spoke to BBC, confirmed President Farmajo was ready to fly to Hargeisa for the dialogue.

“President Farmajo is ready to arrive in Hargeisa carrying the national flag of Somalia,” said the deputy Premier. He said the Federal Government had already made plans for the talks only that Somaliland is headed for local elections. The Federal Government and the Somaliland authorities, according to Guled, will now wait and resume talks after the Somaliland elections.

The deputy Premier revealed there had been plans for the two presidents — Farmaajo and Somaliland’s Musa Bihi Abdi — to meet March this year, but the plans flopped due to some technicalities including mounting tensions in the Tukaraq town. Somaliland declared its independence from Somalia in 1991 and has been lobbying for recognition from the international community.

Allied Forces Launch Joint Operations Against Al-Shabaab In Hiiraan Region

01 October – Source: Halbeeg News  – 241 Words

Somali and African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) forces on Monday launched a massive security operation to flush out Al-Shabaab fighters in Hiiraan region in central Somalia. Jama Saleh, the force commander in the 27th Division, who spoke to the media, said the operation was launched to secure main supply routes linking the major towns in the region. “The purpose of today’s operation is to secure this region and we are planning to wipe out the Al-Shabaab elements in these areas,” he said.

The operation, which is conducted jointly, was launched in areas under the control of the Somali National Army (SNA) and the African Union forces in Hiiraan region. The security forces have been opening up main supply routes blocked by Al-Shabaab, in a move to create a free and secure environment for the Somali people to go about their daily duties. Saleh said the operation will be ongoing to ensure the main supply routes in the region are secured to allow free movement of goods and services.

The exercise, he added, will also improve security in the adjacent areas to enable residents to live in peace, adding that the soldiers were committed to securing the region. “The SNA forces are on course and their morale is so high. That is why they were able to dismantle Al-Shabaab with speed,” he added. Al-Shabaab controls several areas in the region despite efforts by the allied forces to annihilate the group’s fighters.

Haysom’s 1st Take: Unity Between FGS And FMS Key To Progress In Somalia

30 September – Source: Goobjoog News – 347 Words

Incoming UN envoy for Somalia Nicholas Haysom has given his first assessment of the situation in Somalia in which he emphasized the need for unity between the Federal and regional governments for any meaningful progress in the Horn of African nation to happen. Haysom, in an interview with United Nations News Center this week, said Somalia faced challenges in its post war recovery process. He accordingly called for unity of purpose among various stakeholders.

“I think Somalia faces in the first instance a test of its ability to establish effective structures of governance,” said Haysom. “That includes some quite difficult hurdles including agreeing on a new constitution, modalities of elections and all of that will presuppose agreement between the moving parts which in this case is the federal government and the member states of Somalia on the nature of the federal framework they want to establish.”

To realise these milestones, the new UN chief observed, ‘requires the Federal States and the Federal Government to work together and have some kind of unity of purpose in regards to governance issue.” Haysom’s assessment comes ahead of his official start of duty in Mogadishu  on Monday, replacing Michael Keating whose tenure lapsed this month.

Haysom, who has been serving as UN envoy for South Sudan and Sudan, added collaborative efforts between the UN and AU were instrumental in winning the war against the militant group Al-Shabaab: “We would want to see progress in that regard, build and fortify the UN relationship with the African Union which I think is critical for an effective effort to degrade and or bring Al-Shabaab into the mainstream.”

Like his predecessor, Haysom comes to office at a time relations between Mogadishu and federal states are at an all-time low following a move by the latter to cut off links with President Mohamed Farmaajo’s administration. A National Security Council meeting mid last month failed to take place after state leaders declared they would not be attending unless the federal government accedes to its demands which included unequivocal declaration it would not interfere with the state administrations.


Somali Army Kills 5 Al-Shabab Militants In Southern Region

01 October – Source: Xinhua – 175 Words

Somali National Army (SNA) on Sunday killed five al-Shabab militants and injured several others during a fierce fighting between the soldiers and insurgents in the southern part of the Horn of Africa nation. SNA Army Commander in the area, Yusuf Hussein Osman said the army and Jubbaland forces also liberated several areas during the operation which took place in regions about 70 km north of Kismayo, the administrative capital of Jubbaland.

“Our forces are making military progress in an ongoing operation in the region, we killed five al-Shabab militants and several others were injured while two of our soldiers sustained injuries,” Osman told journalists. He said al-Shabab militants strongly resisted by dropping mortar shells towards the army but were overpowered.

Among the areas liberated included Bangini, Mana-mufo and Koban — all in Jamame, the strategic and major al-Shabab stronghold town in Lower Jubba region. Osman vowed to carry out with operations to liberate several regions still under the militants’ control. Al-Shabab militants did not comment on the latest military operations in Lower Jubba region so far.


“Ms Ali says legal changes that made it mandatory for health workers, social care professionals and teachers to report FGM cases to the police, were a major step towards shifting attitudes. But she favours education over prosecution, hoping the former can ultimately bring the practice to an end.”

My Sister Was Crying And Screaming, And I Was Too’: FGM Survivor Fighting To End Practice That Left Her Unable To Have Children

01 October – Source: The Independent – 1123 Words

“I woke up really early in the morning, I couldn’t sleep because I was so excited, it was like Christmas,” recalls Hoda Ali. “I went to my mum’s room and asked: ‘Is it time yet?’. She asked me what I was doing up at 6am and told me to go back to bed. I remember going to bed and just waiting.” But Ms Ali, who was then just seven years old, was not waiting for presents. She was waiting to undergo female genital mutilation (FGM).

Practiced on an estimated 98 per cent of girls in Somalia at the time, she had grown up to view it as a rite of passage shared with her friends and family. The night before Ms Ali and her younger sister were due to undergo the procedure, their family had thrown a party at their home in Mogadishu and given them gifts. “There are certain parts of the world where they don’t tell girls what they’re going through but in Somalia nobody hid it from us,” Ms Ali tells The Independent. “I would come home from school and say to my mum: ‘When is my time? Because I need this so I can be like my friends.’”

Ms Ali’s mother arranged for a traditional “cutter” to come to the family home to perform FGM on her two daughters, and even paid extra for local anaesthetic. “This woman came in, she was wearing black head to toe,” Ms Ali remembers. “The first thing she said to me was: ‘Hoda, you’re the oldest, you know your sister is going to go first.’ “She said: ‘Make sure you don’t cry, make sure you don’t scare her, make sure you’re strong for her’, and then she left and went into our room.” She described the woman putting a cloth down on the floor before two of her aunties held her six-year-old sister down and the FGM started.

“She had a needle and a syringe, she administered the local anaesthetic and then she cut.  My sister was crying and screaming, I was crying too and I had my hand over my mouth. I was very frightened.  But when I went in, I did what the woman said. I lay down on the floor – I didn’t move, I didn’t scream.  “The real pain only started when the local anaesthetic wore off.” Ms Ali’s legs were bound together from hip to ankle and she was confined to her bed for two weeks, before the cutter came back to check on her work. “If a stitch was out of place they would do it again,” she adds. “The whole point is for a husband to force himself and prove the woman is a virgin. When women give birth, it’s very dangerous. Then they are stitched up again exactly the same, it happened to my sister four times.”

Ms Ali had undergone type three FGM, one of the most severe types of non-medical procedures that are practiced on girls across parts of Africa, Asia,and the Middle East. Afterwards, she felt she was finally “fitting in” with a society where it is “taboo” to talk about FGM or the pain it caused. But when Ms Ali turned 11, she fell seriously ill. It was 1991 and the Somali civil war had started the week before. Her parents took her to a hospital run by an Italian charity, where doctors discovered, what they believed, a cyst formed by an accumulation of menstrual blood that had been unable to escape.

@SomaliPM: Today I met with high-level International Partners to discuss the agenda of the Somali Federal Government on the Inclusive political blue print for #Somalia by 2020. We are committed to work with its international partners on a mutual accountability

@AbdulBillowAli: China’s Ambassador to #Somalia Mr. Qin Jian addresses government officials, diplomatic corps and members of civil society in #Mogadishu on the occasion tocelebrate the 69th anniversary of the founding of The People’s Republic of#China.

@Halbeeg_News: Allied forces launch joint operations against Al-Shabaab in Hiiraan region https://en.halbeeg.com/2018/10/01/allied-forces-launch-joint-operations-against-al-shabaab-in-hiiraan-region/.

@TaekwndoSomalia#Somalia National Team – Another podium finish for @TaekwndoSomalia. So proud of flying the Somalia high at London Int. Champs 2018. Abdulahi-Gold, Munirh-Gold, Ilham-Silver, Umeymh & Najma-Bronze. @Fatumaabdulahi@elmi11_ahmed @abdijama10 @Asahaaf @SomaliLibaax@ZainabSirad

@DrBeileh: What an an honour to deliver a lecture on Public Economics to students yesterday’s at the National university. Education is a key element of #Somalia‘s  reforms because we must build a strong economy & governance systems to achieve sustainable development. Learning=empowerment.

@engabdiashur: Received in my office @MPTTSomalia a delegation from @WorldBank led by Mr. Niraj Verma, Manager for Finance, Competitiveness, & Innovation for East Africa.  We discussed a number of issues reflecting the crosscutting nature of ICT across industries and sectors in #Somalia.

@DalsanFM: Ex President Mohamud Sheikh Elected Leader Of New UPD Party https://www.radiodalsan.com/en/2018/10/01/ex-president-mohamud-sheikh-elected-leader-of-new-upd-party-2/.

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Image of the dayMinister of Finance, Abdirahman Beileh, giving a pep talk to students of Somali National University in Mogadishu.

Photo: @DrBeileh


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