24 October- Source: Reuters- 93 Words
A wheelbarrow exploded outside a police station in Bossaso, a port city in Somalia’s semi-autonomous region of Puntland, on Tuesday, killing the lone man pushing it, a police officer told Reuters. Mohammed Abdi, a police officer, told Reuters security personnel had stopped a man outside a police station’s checkpoint and then “suddenly his wheelbarrow exploded. Only the wheelbarrow man died.”
A Reuters witness saw the debris of the wooden wheelbarrow and the dead porter.Abdi said police did not know what type of bomb had been used or who was behind the attack.
- Wheelbarrow Bomb Kills Man Pushing It In Somalia’s Puntland Police Say (Reuters)
- Somaliland Presidential Campaign In High Gear While Some Tribal Elders Advocate For Clan Voting (Goobjoog News)
- Ethiopia PM Says Al-Shabaab Behind Mogadishu Blast Vows Renewed Combat ( Africa News)
- Somali Prime Minister To Visit Turkey On Wednesday (Anadolu Agency)
- More Than 130 Somali Refugees Repatriated From Yemen (VOA)
- This Was Not ‘Just Another Bomb In Mogadishu’. It Will Destroy Al-Shabaab (The Guardian)
Somaliland Presidential Campaign In High Gear While Some Tribal Elders Advocate For Clan Voting
24 October – Source: Goobjoog News – 258 Words
Somaliland presidential campaign is gearing up in major towns in the Somali breakaway region in an election that is expected to take place in the middle of next month and the local elders are advocating for votes to be cast on tribal lines. It is the fourth day into the presidential campaign and the contenders trooped to Las Anod town where Muse Bihi Abdi of the ruling party Kulmiye and Abdirahman Mohamed Iro who heads the biggest opposition party Wadani met with their supporters on two different days in the town.
Las Anod is a strong hold of the ruling party and other major towns including Hargeysa, Borama, Burao, Erigabo and Berbera. Kulmiye party took the town yesterday with huge supporters coming out and waving party flags and distributed political manifesto brochures to their supporters which was absent in earlier presidential campaigns which gave birth to special new enthusiasm to their campaign.
Opposition UCID party led by Engineer Feisal Ali Waraabe had few supporters compared to the ones that came out for other parties. On the other hand, the presidential race has a taken a new twist and unprecedented move not seen in the history of Somaliland presidential campaigns where tribal elders are promoting candidates on tribal lines in areas like Sool and Awdal regions in order to solicit support for them. No major confrontations or causalities have been sighted during the campaign period of the last 2 days in Las Anod town though one death was reported through a car accident that took place in the town.
24 October – Source: Africa News – 221 Words
Ethiopian Prime Minister, Hailemariam Desalegn, says al-Qaeda linked Al-Shabaab were behind the Mogadishu bombing of October 14, 2017. Desalegn was speaking when Somali President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo paid an official visit to Addis Ababa seeking support to fight Al-Shabaab. “We believe that al-Shabaab did this inhuman act of terror on innocent civilians of Somalia thinking that it will conceal the problems that are from within itself and we are set to act upon it,” Hailemariam stressed.
“Setting a strategy to urgently and solidly response to this act in a more strategic way and never letting it happen again was the issue of our focus”. Farmajo on his part also said Somalia believed Al-Shabaab were behind the attacks even though the group has not commented on the attack which has killed over 300 people whiles over 400 others are injured.
The attack has drawn global condemnation and has upped the tempo on the need to defeat terrorism in the Horn of Africa region. Farmajo also disclosed that he will be visiting Djibouti to solicit support in the fight against terrorism. The Horn of Africa region is generally considered a volatile region. The armed conflict in South Sudan, Al-Shabaab’s attacks of Somalia and Kenya, Ethiopia’s internal security concerns and border issues with Eritrea are among some of the security headaches in the region.
24 October – Source: Anadolu Agency – 90 Words
Somali Prime Minister Hassan Ali Khayre will make his first official visit to Turkey on Wednesday. According to Turkey’s prime ministry, Khayre will visit from Wednesday until Friday and meet Somali citizens being treated in Turkey following an Oct. 14 truck bomb which killed at least 358 people and injured 228 others in Mogadishu.
Thirty-five Somalis, including three children, injured in the truck bombing were airlifted to Turkey for medical treatment. Khayre will meet Prime Minister Binali Yildirim in Ankara on Thursday to discuss bilateral relations, regional and international issues.
24 October – Source: VOA – 339 Words
In a joint operation funded by the United States, the U.N. migration and refugee agencies have repatriated 134 Somali refugees from war-torn Yemen. A refugee boat carrying 73 men and women and 61 children left the Yemeni port of Aden on Monday and is to arrive Tuesday at the Somali port of Berbera. It is the third voluntary return of Somalis organized by the International Organization for Migration and U.N. refugee agency since September.
IOM spokesman Joel Millman said some previous efforts had to be suspended in the past few years because of the risks involved in organizing an operation such as this in a war-torn country. “Despite security difficulties there and the fact of divided authorities, we were still able to get into an area around Aden that has not always been accessible to humanitarian aid groups and manage this transport,” he said. The U.N. migration agency reports the Somalis came to Yemen in search of a better life, but got caught up in the conflict and often were subjected to abuse by smugglers. The IOM began organizing the voluntary returns in November 2016. Since then, the agency has helped 1,845 Somalis return home. Millman told VOA Somali refugees receive a reintegration package to help them restart their lives when they arrive home. He said they often receive a grant of $1,100 so they can start a business, buy a cow, or invest in some other form of livelihood.
OPINION, ANALYSIS AND CULTURE
“It is different this time. It is everyone’s trouble. Everyone in the city has lost someone or knows someone who was injured. We are not asking for more money or more weapons or more advisers or more equipment, even though we will need all of that if we are to rebuild our country. The Somalis need to put aside their many, many differences, and stand as one against al-Shabaab. We are asking for unity.”
23 October – Source: The Guardian – 928 Words
At 3.20 on the afternoon of Saturday 14 October, Al-Shabaab detonated a massive truck bomb at a busy junction on the road into Mogadishu, known as KM5. The truck, which had been driven in from the outskirts of the city that day, was packed with 400 kg of mixed explosives, including military-grade but also the homemade-from-fertiliser type. The truck had been spotted by security forces at a checkpoint but had crashed through the barrier and sped along the road to KM5.
The area is always busy, jammed with hotels and shops, but at that time it was genuinely bustling; school had finished and it was just before afternoon prayers. The truck bomb went off beside a fuel tanker and the resultant carnage flattened the area for hundreds of metres around. But you wouldn’t know it now, as the reconstruction effort has moved apace to erase signs of the atrocity. In the attack, 358 men, women and children died and hundreds were injured. An estimated 56 are missing and we will probably never know the exact figures, as some bodies completely disintegrated.
About an hour later a car bomb went off in another part of the city. The driver had already been detained by the Somali security forces when that device detonated but he quickly confirmed what everyone knew in their hearts: this was the work of al-Shabaab, and he had been due to rendezvous with the truck bomb elsewhere in Mogadishu, where he would have used the car explosion to blast a way through for the bigger truck attack.
Al-Shabaab has been silent, perhaps stunned by their own handiwork. It’s likely that they are worried about how this atrocity will damage them in the few pockets of support they still have in Somalia. Al-Shabaab’s silence has also allowed the Somali rumour mill to churn. For example, some say the bomber sought revenge for a recent incident in Bariire town in Lower Shabelle – a falsehood adding to another falsehood. In that incident, a group of armed men moving at night to attack a rival clan stumbled upon a Somali Special Forces patrol. There is no proven connection between the incidents.
It suits al-Shabaab’s purposes to drop in poisonous lies here and there to distract from what everyone knows to be true, that they were behind this atrocity. The people – and the media – must restrain themselves and not spread disinformation. There are other things we should focus on. We have been inspired by the popular response. The president, the prime minister, many ministers and the mayor of Mogadishu donated blood that evening and tweeted a call for others to do the same: so many came that the football stadium had to be used to allow the hospitals to continue to treat the injured.