October 20, 2014 | Morning Headlines.

Main Story

The imminent prospect of Somalia attracting huge investment

19 Oct – Source: RBC Radio – 249 Words

Somali government says the country is now on the imminent prospect of attracting huge investment as a result of the President Hassan Sheikh’s meeting with MEDEF in Paris, France in his last week  official visit.

Around 6,000 investment companies are members of MEDEF and they have representatives around the globe: 800,000 international firms are members of MEDEF, working in work in Africa and in other continents giving Somalia a potential opportunity to attract foreign direct investment [FDI] to the country as it starts its post-conflict period.
The President encouraged these companies to invest in Somalia as the country moves towards peace and stability. Somalia is strategically located and has significant natural resources.

“The President assured these companies that Somalia is open for business and will honour all agreements that are in the interest of the people and the nation” said information Minister Mustaf Dhuhulow.

He says, Somalia has the potential to provide an economic boost not only to Somalia but also to the region and to the companies themselves. Dr Ali Said Faqi, the Somalia Ambassador to EU who organized the meeting, stated that this meeting would enhance the relationship between France and Somalia. This is a clear sign that Somalia is moving forward and that the huge progress on the ground presents huge opportunities for investors.”

Security in Somalia is seen as improving one while Somali National Army and AMISOM Operation Indian Ocean continue to roll back groups Al-Shabaab as well as stabilizing newly recovered areas.

Key Headlines

  • The imminent prospect of Somalia attracting huge investment (RBC Radio)
  • Somalis need food not just security improvements (VOA news)
  • AU Special Representative saddened by attack on AMISOM peacekeepers urges for calm and restraint in Hiran Region (Radio GoobJoog/Radio Muqdisho/Radio Dalsan)
  • Shabelle administration and journalists urge federal government to release detained journalists(Goobjoog Radio/Mareeg Media)
  • River Shabelle continues to increase with fears of flood in Beledweyne (Radio GoobJoog/Radio Muqdisho)
  • Minister Goodax becomes Mozambique election observer (Radio Dalsan)
  • Govt in ‘unofficial’ talks with Al Shabaab (The East African)
  • KDF intercepts car with explosives kills five occupants (Standard Media)
  • Rift emerges within Somali community (New Vision)
  • Somalia leader says his advisers not helping Islamist militants (Reuters)
  • Penniless starving and at the mercy of marauding armed gangs: appalling fate of Yemen and Somalia’s khat addicts revealed (Daily Mail UK)

PRESS RELEASE

The African Union (AU) Establishes a Team to Investigate Allegations of Sexual Exploitation and Abuse (SEA) by the AU Mission in Somalia (AMISOM).

17 Oct – Source: AMISOM – 463 Words

The Chairperson of the Commission of the African Union (AU), H.E. Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, has today authorized the deployment of an Investigation Team to look into allegations of Sexual Exploitation and Abuse (SEA) leveled against personnel of the AU Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) by Human Rights Watch (HRW) in a report titled “The Power these Men Have Over Us – Sexual Exploitation and Abuse by African Union Forces in Somalia” which was issued in Nairobi, Kenya on 8 September, 2014.

The Investigation Team of four, including two women, are from Ghana, Tanzania and Zimbabwe and have the requisite training, qualifications, expertise and experience at national, regional and international levels which they would bring to bear in the discharge of this very important responsibility.

The Investigation Team is to conduct investigations into the specific allegations of sexual exploitation and abuse made against AMISOM personnel, particularly the Ugandan and Burundian Contingents as well as AMISOM civilian personnel with a view to:

Establishing the facts with respect to these allegations so that a determination can be made on whether the allegations of SEA occurred or not; and,
Establishing, if they occurred, the duration that such actions have been taking place and the actions taken by the AMISOM Leadership that either contributed to, or deterred the alleged actions from occurring.

The Investigation Team will conduct its assignment in an independent, professional and transparent manner. The Investigation Team will be responsive to the needs of alleged victims and potential witnesses as well as to the wishes of all concerned to find out the truth about these allegations. The Chairperson requests the full cooperation of all relevant parties to these investigations, including unfettered access to all persons and sites that will facilitate the conduct of these investigations.

The Chairperson would like to reiterate that the AU’s commitment and determination to reinforce its efforts in combating sexual exploitation and abuse in all its ramifications, especially its impact on victims, survivors and their families. In this regard therefore, The Chairperson has also constituted an Assessment Team consisting of Academics and Women Activists with special expertise on victim of sexual violence, protection and law enforcement and peace and security that will concurrently conduct a comprehensive assessment to determine the extent, nature, patterns and trends of SEA in AMISOM, if at all, so as to inform and guide its policy and response mechanisms not only for AMISOM but for all its Peace Support Operations (PSOs).

The Investigation and Assessment Teams are expected to complete their assignments by 30 November, 2014after which the teams will submit their reports to The Chairperson. The findings and recommendations will be made public, using the appropriate AU channels and with due regards to victim protection, the rights of alleged perpetrators as well as the operational imperatives of AMISOM.

SOMALI MEDIA

The imminent prospect of Somalia attracting huge investment

19 Oct – Source: RBC Radio – 249 Words

Somali government says the country is now on the imminent prospect of attracting huge investment as a result of the President Hassan Sheikh’s meeting with MEDEF in Paris, France in his last week  official visit.

Around 6,000 investment companies are members of MEDEF and they have representatives around the globe: 800,000 international firms are members of MEDEF, working in work in Africa and in other continents giving Somalia a potential opportunity to attract foreign direct investment [FDI] to the country as it starts its post-conflict period.
The President encouraged these companies to invest in Somalia as the country moves towards peace and stability. Somalia is strategically located and has significant natural resources.

“The President assured these companies that Somalia is open for business and will honour all agreements that are in the interest of the people and the nation” said information Minister Mustaf Dhuhulow.

He says, Somalia has the potential to provide an economic boost not only to Somalia but also to the region and to the companies themselves. Dr Ali Said Faqi, the Somalia Ambassador to EU who organized the meeting, stated that this meeting would enhance the relationship between France and Somalia. This is a clear sign that Somalia is moving forward and that the huge progress on the ground presents huge opportunities for investors.”

Security in Somalia is seen as improving one while Somali National Army and AMISOM Operation Indian Ocean continue to roll back groups Al-Shabaab as well as stabilizing newly recovered areas.


Somalis need food, not just security improvements

19 Oct – Source: VOA news –  434 Words

The United Nations envoy in Somalia is warning that political and security improvements are not enough to stop hunger and stave off a worsening humanitarian crisis. At least one million Somalis are at risk of starvation, according to UN officials.

Failed rains coupled with recurrent drought and conflict have further worsened the country’s protracted humanitarian crisis. “Today, we have confirmation of the worsening of the food security we have now predicted for few months. Food security is once again a key concern for Somalia, as we had it before.

Over 1 million people in the country face acute food insecurity, up to 20 percent compared to 6 months ago. This brings the total number of people in need of humanitarian assistance or livelihood support to over 3 million people,” said Philippe Lazzarini, U.N. Humanitarian Coordinator in Somalia.

In the southern Somali town of Baidoa, drought has affected animal trade. Traders at the market say that it’s no longer business as usual for them. And as pasture is depleting and riverbeds such as these ones are drying up, thousands that rely on this trade for survival fear a renewed humanitarian crisis in the region.

The image is the same in Elbur, in central Somalia. Water wells have run dry. UN officials recently visited the town to assess the humanitarian situation. “The general situation was that we had identified six regions that were stricken by the drought, and two of them most severely suffered from water shortage, that is Gedo and Galgadud,” said Abdi Ahmed Mohamed, Somalia’s agriculture minister.

UN officials say that 250,000 children are among the one million people in need, with 50,000 believed to be on the brink of death if immediate assistance is not provided. Somali authorities say that the response has been positive compared to the previous famine period. But officials warn that children and the elderly remain at risk.

“The disasters, including drought – those who suffer the most are the weakest.  It’s the children and the elderly people who suffer the most,” said Mohamed. The top UN envoy to Somalia, Nicholas Kay, recently told the UN Security Council that the humanitarian situation has deteriorated despite recent gains. This, he said, has been worsened by al-Shabab terrorists’ decision to impose a blockade on most towns they have lost to Somali and African Union soldiers.

A devastating famine in 2011 claimed a quarter million lives, according to the UN.  But now, the UN, the government and its international partners are raising alarm early enough to avert the country from falling victim to a second famine in four years.


AU Special Representative saddened by attack on AMISOM peacekeepers, urges for calm and restraint in Hiran Region

19 Oct – Source: Radio GoobJoog/Radio Muqdisho/Radio Dalsan –  257 Words

The Special Representative of the Chairperson of the African Union Commission (SRCC) for Somalia, Ambassador Maman S. Sidikou is saddened by news coming in from the central Hiiran region that armed men and rioters blocked and attacked AMISOM peacekeepers this morning while they were on a reconciliation mission in the area.

The AMISOM forces were bound for the village of Deefow – the epicentre of recent localised conflicts. Deefow is 40 kilometers north of the city of Beletweyne, the regional capital of Hiiran. Our peacekeepers were blocked by armed men and protesters at El-Gal, 10 kilometers north of Beletweyne. The men opened fire on the AMISOM troops who had no choice but to defend themselves.

“I am deeply saddened to hear of this clash in the Hiiran region. I wish to request for calm and restraint and hereby plead with the people of Hiiraan to choose peace and avoid any further conflict in Deefow and elsewhere. I wish to clarify to the people of Hiiraan – and indeed the whole of Somalia – that AMISOM is non-partisan and does not support any particular group or clan. We are in Somalia to serve all Somali people and support their government to achieve lasting peace,” Ambassador Sidikou said.

The AU Special Representative also said that AMISOM regrets any loss of life or injuries that occurred in the attack and urged the people of Hiiran to work with AMISOM and the Somalia government to amicably resolve their internal differences and avoid any other acts that would further aggravate the situation.


Shabelle administration and journalists urge federal government to release detained journalists

19 Oct – Source: Radio Goobjoog/Mareeg Media – 230 Words

The administration of Shabelle media network and other journalists who held press conference in Mogadishuon Sunday urged the federal government to unconditionally release the four journalists of Shabelle Media Network detained in Mogadishu Central prison.

The director of Shabelle Media network Mohamed Muse demanded the federal government to bring the journalists before court, among the detained journalist is the owner of Shabelle media network Abdimalik Yussuf.

Abdulkadir Mohamed Farah Dulyar, one of the journalists said the long detention of Shabelle and Sky FM workers has disappointed the journalist in the country and advised the government to forget about the past and free the journalists.

Recently Somali Attorney general Dr. Ahmed Ali Dahir stated that the journalist of Shabelle media network will soon be brought before court to face justice after their case is completed and delivered to the attorney’s office adding that the government has the rights of keeping the accused in jail for more than 48 hours before the person is brought to court if the need arise.

He warned the media outlets that exaggerate the arrest of Shabelle and Sky FM employees by the government. The federal government of Somalia accused Shabelle and SKY of incitement after Somali national forces and AMISOM launched disarmament operation in the Capital which led to clashes between Somali forces together with AMISOM and former warlord Ahmed Hassan Adow aka Ahmed Da’i.


River Shabelle continues to increase with fears of flood in Beledweyne

19 Oct – Source: Radio GoobJoog/Radio Muqdisho – 110 Words

There is real fear that River Shabelle might overflow its banks in Beledweyne district, the headquarters of Hiran region. The governor of Hiran region Abdifatah Hassan Afrah advised the residents in the district to be alert and avoid floods of the river.

Goobjoog correspondent in the region says many people in the district are seen making preparations to closing river bank breaches and others looking for save place in the area. Shabelle River that flows through Beledweyne town regularly bring excessive water and floods during the rainy season.

The recent flood of the river has affected hundreds of families who fled their houses cutting their access to food and water.


Minister Goodax becomes Mozambique election observer

19 Oct – Source: Radio Dalsan –  154 Words

The  somali Interior Minister Hon. Abdullahi Goodax Barre and his delegation were invited to be part of the observers of Mozambique elections which started on 15th October.

The observers were selected by Electoral Institute for Sustainable Democracy in Africa (EISA). The observers also include the former PM of Kenya Raila Odinga. For Hon.Goodax to become one of the election observers in Mozambique is important for Somalia where the election of one man one vote is expected in 2016 as Hon. Goodax will learn a lot from how the elections of Mozambique are being conducted.

Hon. Goodax met with some members of the electoral commission in Mozambique and officials from the constitutional court of Mozambique as well as member of FRELIMO Mr. Filip Nyusi, the candidate of that party. The election was free and fair. More than 10m people registered to vote. The results of the election will be announced in 15 days time.

REGIONAL MEDIA

Govt in ‘unofficial’ talks with Al Shabaab

18 Oct  – Source: The East African – 551 Words

The government of Somalia has started talking to the moderate wing of Al Shabaab even as it continues to battle the radical wing. Somalia ambassador to Kenya Ali Noor told The EastAfrican that his government has always been willing to talk to Al Shabaab as long as the militia renounces violence.

“We have opened unofficial channels for talks but serious discussions can only come when Al Shabaab come out openly and declare that they want to be part of the solution for Somalia and not the problem. Otherwise, it will not be possible to negotiate with people who kill innocent people,” said Mr Noor.

The ambassador said the government will take the youth — who have been under Al Shabaab for 23 years — to school or train them in skills that will help them generate income.


KDF intercepts car with explosives, kills five occupants

19 Oct – Source: Standard Media –  464 Words

The Kenya Defence Forces have intercepted a four-wheel drive car with Kenyan registration numbers laden with explosives at the Kenya-Ethiopia border and killed five occupants. The personnel under Amisom together with the Somali National Army shot and killed the five occupants of the Toyota Prado car in the Saturdaymorning incident.

Department of Defence spokesman Bogita Ongeri said the vehicle also had six suicide vests and 100 kilograms of TNT, which is used to make bombs. He added the incident happened as the occupants of the vehicle tried to cross to Kenya at Dolo in Moyale. “The occupants opened fire on the security forces who responded killing five Al Shabaab operatives,” said part of a statement sent to newsrooms.

Bogita said the same occupants had earlier on tried to gain entry into Kenya from Somalia at Bulahawa through Mandera and that security forces were working on reliable intelligence which enabled them to trace and track the car.


Rift emerges within Somali community

18 Oct – Source: New Vision  –  372 Words

Mistrust and confusion has emerged within the Somali community living in Uganda with a section of the members accusing the first secretary at the Somali embassy Ali Mohamed of acquiring money by false pretence, intimidation and promoting tribalism.

Lead by the global association of Somali youth in Uganda (GASYU) which largely lives in Kisenyi a Kampala suburb, they allege that Mohamed took shs1 million from the elders of the community to stand as a surety in court for a one Ali Ahmed Deko, a thing he never fulfilled.

Ugandan police recently arrested suspected Islamist Al-Shabaab who had allegedly planned to carry out bomb attacks following Ugandan troops in Somalia, reportedly providing intelligence that helped US Special Forces kill the Al-Shabaab’s chief.

INTERNATIONAL MEDIA

Somalia leader says his advisers not helping Islamist militants

19 Oct – Source: Reuters  –  485 Words

Somalia’s president said on Friday that nobody close to him had been involved in the unauthorised diversion of government weapons to Islamist militants and denied that a man U.N investigators linked to the arms trade had advised him.

President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud was responding to a report from the United Nations’ Somalia-Eritrea Monitoring Group that Somali army weapons and ammunition were being diverted to open markets despite the government’s pledges to prevent its arms ending up in the hands of al Shabaab fighters. The report, seen by Reuters, also accused Musa Haji Mohamed Ganjab, a Somali businessman it said had acted as an adviser to the president, of being involved in arms deals.

“I do believe that U.N agencies are not there for accusing, but are there for improving the systems in place,” Mohamud told France 24 television. “The man you call Musa, there isn’t someone called Musa who is my adviser or has ever been in an advisory position in my office. I would have liked the monitoring group to clarify where Musa Haji has ever become an adviser to me.”


Penniless, starving and at the mercy of marauding armed gangs: Appalling fate of Yemen and Somalia’s khat addicts revealed

19 Oct – Source: Daily Mail UK – 723 Words

Fresh, green and innocent-looking, the neatly tied bunches of khat found in markets across the Horn of Africa look far from dangerous. But, as these photographs reveal, that is exactly what they are.

Banned in the UK earlier this year, khat, a narcotic green leaf which produces a sense of euphoria in users, is a common sight on the streets of Yemeni capital Sana’a as well as other cities in the region.

But with side-effects that include mouth disease, tooth loss and, in some cases, mental illness, the drug takes a terrible toll on addicts, which in some cases, include children as young as six years old.

SOCIAL MEDIA

CULTURE / OPINION / EDITORIAL / ANALYSIS / BLOGS/ DISCUSSION BOARDS

“Piracy is an international criminal activity and needs to be considered in the same way as drug smuggling or human trafficking and involves a complex international network of financiers,”


Pirates backed by international criminal networks, claims author

19 Oct – Source: The national –  739 Words

An intricate web of criminal gangs, tribal clans and international finance networks that help Somali piracy survive is the subject of a new book written by a Dubai-based consultant.

First-time author Andrew Palmer says in The New Pirates that it would be a mistake to write off pirates as a spent force. “Somali piracy could reactivate itself. It wouldn’t take very much for it to become an increasing force again. If we saw a change in the circumstances in Somalia that would be the case for a resurgence in Somali piracy.”

October 17, 2014 | Daily Monitoring Report.

Main Story

Dozens arrested in fresh security swoop in Barawe town

16 Oct – Source: Radio RBC/ Radio Muqdisho – 170 Words

Somali government forces backed by the African Union Forces [AMISOM] are continuing heavy security swoop in the town of Barawe weeks after the town has fallen for the joint forces.

Lower Shabelle governor Abdukadir Nur Siidii said the security swoop was carried by the joint forces on Thursday morning aiming to eradicate if there were some Al Shabab hideouts in the town. “The security forces carried the latest security operation meant to assure that Barawe is safe for the civilians.” the governor said “At least one dozen of young suspects were arrested. We are now questioning them.” he added.

Barawe town has been the Al Shabab’s stronghold and safe haven for its top leaders including the foreign fighters for almost six years.  The town has fallen for Somalia forces backed by the African Union Forces two weeks ago.

Key Headlines

  • Somalia asks Kenya to hand over convicted pirates (Radio Ergo)
  • Information minister concerned about targeted killings of Somali journalists (Bar-kulan/Mustaqbal radio)
  • Acting PM called for the Somalis to work with the country’s security forces (Radio Dalsan/Radio Muqdisho)
  • More than 30 suspects arrested over Mandera governor’s convoy attack (Radio Bar-kulan)
  • Burdubo farmers complain of high fuel prices poor harvest (Radio Ergo)
  • Dozens arrested in fresh security swoop in Barawe town (Radio RBC/ Radio Muqdisho)
  • Radio Ergo journalists among media award winners (Radio Ergo)
  • Al-Shabaab claims responsibility for café bombings (Sabahi Online)
  • Somalia anticipates liberation of more al-Shabaab-Controlled areas (mfa.gov.et)
  • Somalia on the brink once again (Reliefweb.int)

SOMALI MEDIA

Somalia asks Kenya to hand over convicted pirates

16 Oct – Source: Radio Ergo – 289 Words

The Somali Federal Government is hoping Kenya will agree to transfer 122 convicted Somali pirates from Kenyan jails back to Somalia.

Somalia’s ambassador to Kenya, Mohammed Ali Nur, told Radio Ergo in a special interview that if an agreement is reached, over 122 convicted Somalis serving prison terms in Mombasa for piracy related offences would be repatriated to Somalia to serve out the remainder of their sentences in Somali prisons.

Some of the pirate prisoners are serving jail terms of between 5 and 20 years, the ambassador said. They are complaining of bad living conditions in the Kenyan prisons and have requested to be transferred back to Somalia. “I visited them in a Mombasa prison recently. Some of them are recovering from injuries they sustained on the high seas, others have got bullets in their bodies and need surgery, while others are suffering from illnesses like diabetes and hypertension,” the ambassador said.

He added that the Somali embassy was pushing hard to get an agreement with the Kenyan government soon. Relatives of some of the pirate prisoners had also been pressurising the embassy to speed up the process of bringing the convicts back.

Speaking about the repatriation process of Somali refugees in Kenya, meanwhile, the ambassador told Radio Ergo that negotiations were moving on smoothly and that the Somali government, in collaboration with international aid agencies, was engaged in improving social services and security in areas liberated from the Al-Shabaab militant group, before the start of any repatriation exercise.

He said thousands of Somali refugees had voluntarily returned to their country with the help of the embassy in Nairobi, which had issued travel documents for them. Many others had approached the embassy and were willing to go back home.


Information minister concerned about targeted killings of Somali journalists

16 Oct – Source: Radio Bar-kulan/Mustaqbal Radio – 142 Words

Somali minister for information Mustaf Ahmed Duhulow has said the federal government of Somalia is concerned about the increasing cases of targeted killings meted against innocent Somali journalists.

Speaking exclusively to Bar-Kulan radio in Nairobi Mr. Duhulo said the federal government will put in place mechanism to cap the serious threat posed to the media practitioners in the country.

He acknowledged that long civil war in the country has contributed to the dangers facing Somali journalists in their daily reporting activities. Somalia is one of the dangerous environments for Journalists to operate after Syria and Iraq.

Last Sunday TV journalist was shot and wounded in an attempted murder. Two journalists lost their lives in the hands of unknown assailants this year in Somalia. Right groups have faulted both the government and the Al Qaida linked militant group Al Shabaab of targeting journalists.


Acting PM called for the Somalis to work with the country’s security forces

16 Oct – Source: Radio Dalsan/Radio Muqdisho – 141 Words

The acting PM who is also the Minister for National Security Hon. Khaliif Ahmed Ereg condemned the recent terror acts in Mogadishu.

Addressing the media, Hon. Ereg said after Al Shabaab were defeated in the war fronts, they turned to target the people and the public places. “Firstly, on behalf of the government and on behalf of myself, I hereby send condolence message to the Somali nation especially the families whose innocent members were affected by the series of heinous acts carried out by the peace spoilers,” Hon. Ereg said. He also requested from the members of the public to report any suspicious activities to the security forces.

Hon. Ereg requested from the owners of business premises where members of the public meet in large numbers to be alert so that the enemy cannot harm the people there and their property.


More than 30 suspects arrested over Mandera governor’s convoy attack

16 Oct – Source: Radio Bar-kulan- 215 Words

At least 35 suspects have been arrested in connection with an attack on Mandera governor convoy on Wednesday.

Mandera County Police Commander Noah Mwivanda said the suspects are under interrogation in connection to the latest blast on Mandera. “We are carrying out a vetting exercise to identify the bandits behind the Wednesdaymorning attack. “We carried out a swoop in which we have arrested 35 people and a special team is screening the suspects,” Mwivanda in Mandera.

He said arrests were prompted by the fact that no one was seen running away from the scene. “We expect to zero in on the perpetrators because nobody was seen by the people around the scene running away immediately after the explosion,” the county police chief said.

The Mandera governor faulted the police failure to provide a single report of the four attacks that have been aimed at him. “The police have not provided any single report after I have escaped death four times within Mandera, I want them this time round to produce a report on this one,” Roba told journalists.


Burdubo farmers complain of high fuel prices, poor harvest

16 Oct – Source: Radio Ergo – 193 Words

Irrigation farmers in Burdubo district have complained of poor harvest during the past few months, citing drought, conflict and high fuel prices as the main causes. The district has not received enough rainfall this rainy season, and fighting near the district had caused fuel prices to go up.

One of the local farmers, Dirham Sheikh Ali, told Radio Ergo that soaring fuel prices were driving up the costs of running tractors and pumping irrigation water. Roads to the town are cut due to the conflict in the region between the Somali government troops and Al-Shabaab militant group.

Radio Ergo’s local reporter said that fuel is being brought to the area on donkey carts from Luq district, which is 85 km from the town. One litre of diesel is selling at $2.5 in Burdubo, while the same sells at $1 in Luq.

The farmers also have to pay three million Somali shillings to hire tractors for land preparation and cleaning canals. This is three times higher than the cost of tractor hire costs in places not affected by the violence. Farmers warned the situation could get worse if no rains were received soon.


Dozens arrested in fresh security swoop in Barawe town

16 Oct – Source: Radio RBC/ Radio Muqdisho- 170 Words

Somali government forces backed by the African Union Forces [AMISOM] are continuing heavy security swoop in the town of Barawe weeks after the town has fallen for the joint forces.

Lower Shabelle governor Abdukadir Nur Siidii said the security swoop was carried by the joint forces on Thursday morning aiming to eradicate if there were some Al Shabab hideouts in the town. “The security forces carried the latest security operation meant to assure that Barawe is safe for the civilians.” the governor said “At least one dozen of young suspects were arrested. We are now questioning them.” he added.

Barawe town has been the Al Shabab’s stronghold and safe haven for its top leaders including the foreign fighters for almost six years.  The town has fallen for Somalia forces backed by the African Union Forces two weeks ago.


Radio Ergo journalists among media award winners

17 Oct – Source: Radio Ergo – 193 Words

Twelve Somali journalists have won awards in the UN-sponsored 2013 Somali Media Awards for their coverage on developmental and humanitarian issues in the country.

The awards, which recognize professionalism in the Somali media industry, were launched last year by the National Union of Somali Journalists (NUSOJ) and Somaliland Journalists Association (SOLJA), in partnership with UNDP, UNFPA, OCHA and UNESCO. Dozens of radio, newspaper and online media journalists submitted their stories for consideration. The entries were judged by an independent panel of judges.

Awards were given for winners from South-central Somalia, Puntland and Somaliland (treated as three separate areas for the awards purpose) in each of four categories – Gender, Children and youth, Access to basic services and Investigative journalism.

Three Radio Ergo reporters, Yusuf Ahmed Keynan, Ali Nor Farah and Mohamud Abdi Dirshe, were among the award-winners in south-central. Keynan’s story on “Women’s Role in Farming” won in the Gender category, while Dirshe’s “Public threatened by unregulated medical profession” won in Access to basic services. “The award is a way of recognising and encouraging our contribution to the nation,” said Radio Ergo’s Nor Ali Farah, who was winner in Youth and children category.


Somalia and Germany discuss cooperation

17 Oct – Source: Radio Bar-kulan – 104 Words

The federal governments of Somalia and its German counterpart have discussed how to improve ties between the two states. National security minister Khalif Ahmed Ereg and German ambassador to Somalia Andreas Peschke who meet in Mogadishu on Thursday have discussed how to strengthen the diplomatic ties between the two states.

Somali minister for planning Said Abdullahi who spoke to the media after the meeting has thanked the federal government support to his country saying they are committed in the rebuilding of the war torn country.

Several European countries have resumed their diplomatic relations with Somalia after normalcy has returned mainly in the capital Mogadishu.

REGIONAL MEDIA

Al-Shabaab claims responsibility for café bombings

16 Oct – Source: Sabahi Online – 636 Words

Five civilians were killed and 14 others injured Wednesday (October 15th) when a car bomb detonated in front of Panorama Café in Mogadishu’s Hamar Weyne district, the second such attack carried out by the militant group in three days.

Al-Shabaab spokesperson Abidaziz Abu Musab said the group will continue targeting venues frequented by employees of the Somali government. “A few hours ago al-Shabaab fighters killed officers [fighting against Islam] who were followed and killed in the middle of the capital,” Musab said Wednesday night according to Somalimemo, a website that supports al-Shabaab. “It will not be possible for you to be safe in your homes and in the rest of the city while you imprison Muslim civilians and sell our people to the infidels,” he warned.


Somalia anticipates liberation of more al-Shabaab-Controlled areas

16 Oct – Source: mfa.gov.et – 221 Words

Somalia defense official told reporters that Somalia’s government expects to liberate areas still controlled by al-Qaeda-linked militants within the next six months. The Somalia National Army, backed by African Union forces, seized the port town of Barawe, 220 kilometers south of the capital, Mogadishu, on October, 5 after meeting little resistance from the al-Shabaab insurgent group.

State Minister of Defense Mohamed Ali Haga said, “we believe it will take the remaining months of this year and the first few months of next, maybe the first three to four months of next year, to liberate the rest of the areas.” Al-Shabaab has been in retreat in Somalia since its fighters were forced to withdraw from the capital, Mogadishu, in August 2011 after a series of military defeats.

INTERNATIONAL MEDIA

Somalia on the brink once again

17 Oct – Source: Reliefweb.int – 335 Words

Somalia is once again under the brink of another humanitarian catastrophe, says aid agency, World Vision International. The organization raised the red flag today over a severe drought as well serious food and water shortages that are having life-threatening consequences on over 3.2 million people in the country.

“We are extremely concerned that the figures have increased by 20% over the last 6 months. Sadly 218,000 children are now severely malnourished,” said Francois Batalingaya, World Vision’s Country Director in Somalia. “The world must act now and let it not forget that it waited too long for the famine that killed thousands in 2010 to occur.”

SOCIAL MEDIA

CULTURE / OPINION / EDITORIAL / ANALYSIS / BLOGS/ DISCUSSION BOARDS

“Al-Shabaab invoke an obsolete apostasy law in their fight against Somali government officials and soldiers as well as civilians working for the government, who the radicals accuse of abandoning Islam simply because they oppose the extremists’ out-dated draconian version of Sharia.”


A new booklet on apostasy in Islam has rattled extremist Somali clerics

17 Oct – Source: Daily Nation – 694 Words

It’s not often that we hear of a battle of ideas between reformist Muslim scholars and fundamentalist clerics of Somalia, who are fighting tooth and nail to silence the voice of moderation and reformation.

A booklet titled Xadka Riddada Maxaa ka Run Ah? (Is there punishment for apostasy in Islam?) published in Nairobi, is a scholarly treatise dealing with the contentious issue of apostasy in Islam and what punishment, if any, is prescribed by Islam.

The author, Abdisaid Ismail, is a Somali scholar, who studied Economics and Islamic Religion at a university in Saudi Arabia. He has done extensive research on the issue of apostasy in Islam and freedom of religion, and concluded that Islam does not prescribe the death penalty for apostasy, and that freedom of religion is clearly enshrined in Islam.


“Four Somalis hijack a charter plane in Seychelles and hold hostage an American crew doing some “60 Minutes”-style reportage for a cable news network. Among them: has-been star journalist Frank Saltzman.”


‘Default’ a hostage thriller that demands little attention

17 Oct – Source: Los Angeles Times – 150 Words

Default tosses plenty of buzzworthy ideas into the mix, but at its heart it’s a run-of-the-mill hostage thriller, spruced up as found footage with Somali pirates.

Four Somalis hijack a charter plane in Seychelles and hold hostage an American crew doing some “60 Minutes”-style reportage for a cable news network. Among them: has-been star journalist Frank Saltzman.


“The following are some critical issues that Somali-Americans in Minnesota are eyeing. The first and foremost of these is access to resources. From health to education to economy of scale to information, the community will have a case to argue and promote come November 4.”


Somali-Americans: why your vote matters on November 4

17 Oct – Source: RBC Radio – 740 Words

The other day, I got an email from a stranger. The header of the message said this: “Can minorities get their votes counted on?” At first, I was terrified by the naked truth behind this question. However, it wasn’t until one hour later that I summoned my courage to compose an answer. What made my understanding worse was that I could not figure out the party affiliation of the sender.

And in so doing, you will keep democracy flourish by exercising your rights to vote. You do democracy a favor, a big one, in short. You co-own the liberty all enjoy. That is why “making democracy work requires informed and active citizens who voice their interests, act collectively and hold public officials accountable.”

Top tweets

‏@mfaethiopia  #News: #Somalia anticipates liberation of more Al-shabaab Controlled areas.http://www.mfa.gov.et/news/more.php?newsid=3592 …

@omabha  Fears black market will flourish as Aussie banks stop Somalia remittances – SBS http://dlvr.it/7Df4HT  #Somalia

@Eye_on_Somalia  #allAfrica Somali Ministerial Committee to Mediate Between Clans in Hiran Region: [Sabahi]The Somali …http://bit.ly/1wgaID5  #somalia

@amisomsomalia  #AMISOM CIMIC team recently conducted a Medical Aid Program in Kismayo, Somalia. A total of 528 patients turned out

@Somalia_Focus  #AMISOM continue security operations in newly liberated areas. @amisomsomalia @TheVillaSomalia@Somalia2016 @Ridwaanhaji

‏@lasoco  Somalia and Germany discuss cooperationhttp://j.mp/1CuJcS3  #Somalia

@RefugeesMedia  Reasons for the surge in arrivals include the ongoing drought in #Somalia as well as conflict, insecurity & lack of opportunities #Yemen

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Image of the day

Image of the day

AMISOM’s CIMIC team recently conducted a Medical Aid Program (MEDICAP) in Kismayo, Somalia. A total of 528 patients turned out especially women & children below the age of 10.

Photo Credit: AMISOM