31 October – Source: Radio Dalsan – 169 Words
Leading telecommunication company Dahabshiil group has donated the amount of US $150 000 to the people affected by the flash floods in Beledweyne in central Somalia. The intervention by the company is meant to offer essential services to families affected by floods as Somalia experiences the heaviest rainfall in 30 years. The chairman and board members of Dahabshiil group of companies also condoled with the families of victims who perished in the flash floods in Beledweyne, Berdale and Gedo. In a press release, Dahabshiil group as part of is committed to assisting the affected and vulnerable people affected by floods and drought by donating urgently needed tents and food rations worth $150, 000 as the phase emergency response to affected in Beledweyne, Berdale and Gedo. The company also appealed to Somali people living in the country and abroad to send their contributions to the following account number MUQD0052734 or eDahab 0623258080, which is being managed by prominent religious leaders, the Somali Chamber of Commerce businessmen and top Dahabshiil management.
31 October – Source: Save the Children – 499 Words
At least 200 000 people – including at least 100 000 children[i] – have been forced to flee their homes in the town of Beledweyne following heavy rains which continue to fall across Hiraan and Bakool regions of Central Somalia Save the Children teams on the ground are reporting whole neighbourhoods are now underwater, with families escaping on tractors, via donkey cart, on boats and on foot. Tens of thousands of families are now living in makeshift camps on higher ground in the surrounding areas in dire need of food, water and other basic necessities. Nearly 85% of the residents of Beledweyne, normally home to nearly 400 000 people have been affected by the floods according to the Somali government. According to the government, the situation has spread to other areas including Bardale, where flash floods due to heavy rains have affected at least 30 000 people. More rains are predicted in the coming days, with warnings that floods will continue or worsen in Beledweyne and surrounding regions.
The main hospital in the Bardale is currently out of action due to the floods, prompting fears that communities may be unprepared for an outbreak of diseases such as malaria and cholera amongst children. Save the Children has deployed mobile health teams and established integrated health and nutrition centre in affected areas to screen children for illnesses and provide nutrition and medical support to displaced communities. Tropical Storm Kyarr is also expected to make landfall in Puntland and Somaliland before the weekend, with strong winds, rains and possible flash flooding[ii]. Save the Children is monitoring the storm’s progress and preparing to scale up its response. The Government of Somalia has appealed to humanitarian actors for support to address the current crisis in Beledweyne and surrounding areas by increasing resources and services to affected communities……..
31 October – Source: The Star – 295 Words
A United Nations report has said Kenyan women are kept captive and exploited through forced marriage and sexual slavery inside Somalia. The report says the women targeted are from the Coast region. “The women were deceived with false promises of a job but instead kept captive and exploited in marriage and sexual slavery,” the report says. Titled Trafficking in persons in the context of armed conflict, the report was prepared by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC). In 2017, a group of women was recruited from a coastal region of Kenya and transported into territory controlled by al Shabaab in Somalia. The report says al Shabaab trafficks women and girls for use in sex slavery or forced marriage. Traffickers take advantage of people’s desperation and deceive them into travelling abroad, ensuring that, en route, many end up in captivity. “Armed groups active in this environment abduct and coerce women into sexual slavery and recruit children for use in combat or support roles,” the report says.
The report says the conflict in Somalia has displaced a large part of the population, creating steady flows of refugees. “Refugee camps in neighbouring countries and informal settlements within the country are marred with vulnerabilities, particularly related to the limited available job options,” the report says. Refugees escaping armed conflict are at risk of being trafficked and used for extortion or sold as sex slaves. The UN says trafficking of children into various armed groups has been documented throughout the country. “Al Shabaab, for example, has trafficked children for various purposes, including armed combat and sexual slavery. The armed group Ahl al-Sunna wal-Jama’a, the Somalia National Army, clan militias and regional government forces have also recruited children into their ranks, albeit in lesser numbers,” the report says.
31 October – Source: Daily Sabah – 523 Words
Officials and business people from Turkey and Somalia emphasized developing economic ties between the two countries and called for more initiatives to enhance cooperation in every field. Speaking at a Turkey-Somali Business Council meeting organized by the Foreign Economic Relations Board (DEİK) on Wednesday, the council’s head Ahmet Sami İşler stressed that Somalia has a very special position in the African vision of Turkey. İşler added that bilateral relations gained impetus particularly after an official visit by then-Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan in 2011 and with the reopening of the Turkish Embassy in Mogadishu the same year. “We, as Turkish businessmen, are ready to give all contributions to utilize the resources of Somalia for the country’s economy,” İşler said.
Turkey’s Africa initiative dates back to the action plan adopted in 1998, and it gained momentum after 2005, which was declared the “Year of Africa” in Turkey. Since then, the country has focused on comprehensive, long-term policies aimed at diversifying its relations with the continent. In that perspective, Somalia has earned special status, and many projects on rural development, health, micro-macro enterprises and security have been carried out by Turkish businessmen and state agencies. “We had excellent technical meetings with the Turkish delegation. This is a very good platform and mechanism to take stock of our economic and trade relations with Turkey,” said Jamal Mohamed Hassan, Somalia’s minister of planning, investment and economic development. The Turkey-Somalia Business Council was established in September 2015 after an agreement signed between DEİK and the Somalia Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SCCI) with the aim of advancing the economic relations between the two countries by business forums, delegation visits, meetings and seminar events. The first meeting of the council was held last year in Istanbul. This year’s meeting saw major participation from the Somali side as Fisheries and Maritime Resources Minister Abdullahi Bidhan Warsame, Port and Marine Transport Minister Mariam Aweys Jama, Agriculture Minister Said Hussein Eid and Commerce and Industry Minister Abdullahi Ali Hassan took part in the Somali delegation. “We have already implemented most of the agreements we reached last time. This year, we have had even more successful meetings,” Hassan added…….
31 October – Source: Daily Nation – 640 Words
A terror suspect who was shot and seriously injured when a multi-agency security team led by officers from the Anti-Terror Police Unit (ATPU) raided his hideout in Tudor needs surgery on his right arm and hind limb. Salim Aboud Khalid alias Survivor, who is now on a wheelchair, suffered serious gunshot wounds on the wee hours of September 11, 2019, and now requires an operation to correct his injured arm and limb. Through his lawyer Yussuf Aboubakar, the suspect has urged a Mombasa court to free him so that he can seek specialised treatment.
“The suspect suffered broken arms and limbs. He needs a specialised gadget for operation but the family cannot assist him because he is in custody. We urge the court to grant him bond so that he can be assisted to have the operation done,” Mr Aboubakar said. It also emerged that the mobile phones the detectives recovered from the suspect and forwarded to Nairobi for ballistic analysis have exonerated him from terror links. “There is no single shred of evidence linking the suspect to terror group and the three offences he is facing. The police have returned the phones and report on the forensic analysis of the gadgets. It has no iota of evidence against the accused. I have been told to sign it,” the advocate told Mombasa Chief Magistrate Edna Nyaloti.
Mr Khalid is accused of being a member of Al-Shabaab and obstructing a police officer from carrying out his duty. The court heard that the suspect attempted to attack police constable Edapal Lowasa with a knife. The charge sheet reads that the suspect, with intent to maim, unlawfully attempted to strike the officer with a knife in Tudor, Mombasa on September 11. And in an affidavit opposing bond for the suspect, the State said that he has links in Syria, Somalia and three other countries and has participated in the planning and execution of terror attacks by Al-Shabaab militants in northern Kenya and at the Coast. The Director of Public Prosecutions said that Mr Khalid is a Shabaab operative who has coordinated various terror attacks within the country. Relying on an affidavit filed by ATPU officer Dickson Indaru, State Counsel Erick Masila told the court that the suspect, who has survived several death traps, has been on the run and on the police most wanted list since June last year over links with the Somalia-based militants…….
31 October – Source: IFJ – 280 Words
Somali journalist Abdulkadir Barre Moallim was jailed for 3 months on 29 October after being arrested and convicted of organising an unlawful meeting. The IFJ joined its affiliate the National Union of Somali Journalists (NUSOJ) in condemning the sentence and called on the authorities to release him. A court in Southwest State condemned freelance journalist Abdulkadir Barre Moallim to a 3-month jail sentence and a 300USD fine. He was arrested on 25 September and has been held in prison in Baidoa since then. According to NUSOJ, the accusation was that he covered a press conference given by local elders who had reportedly condemned a move to block former Somali President Sharif Sheikh Ahmed and his delegation of Himilo Qaran Political Party from travelling to Kismayo, Jubbaland. The court stated that the journalist and three other convicted persons organised an “unlawful” meeting in Baidoa. Moallim and the three other defendants were all charged with violating an article referring to political conspiracy to commit a crime. In Somalia, attacks on journalists have increased. In September, several journalists in Baidoa were threatened and intimidated. Three other journalists were interviewed by security forces after Moallim’s arrest……
31 October – Source: IFJ – 559 Words
Somalia is one of the most dangerous countries in Africa and presents a real risk of death for journalists. Corruption and insecurity are a serious obstacle to press freedom. Since 2010, 55 journalists have been killed, including one Malaysian, 1 Italian and 6 Russians with the deadliest year being 2012 when 18 journalists got killed. Only 4 killers have been punished. Since the beginning of the year, 3 journalists have been killed.
In Somalia, the Al-Shabaab movement has been active since 2006 and was responsible for the death of three journalists in 2019. This Islamist terrorist group of Jihadist Salafist ideology is part of Al Qaeda. They are held responsible for many attacks, assassinations and kidnappings since their inception, also affecting journalists and media workers, and usually, claim responsibility for them. Al-Shabab members attack journalists (and civilians) who do not submit to self-censorship. Besides physical attacks, torture and arrests, the media are also closed by order of the Somali authorities. Journalists who try to carry out their work with a critical opinion are in danger of being killed. According to the National Union of Somali Journalist (NUSOJ), an IFJ affiliate, 3 journalists’ killers from Al-Shabab have been prosecuted, sentenced to death and executed by firing squad. The union welcomes the prosecution of journalists’ killers but is against the death penalty.
A policeman was also sentenced to a 5-year jail term this year for the killing of Abdirisak Qasim Iman killed on 26th July, 2018. In 2019, the 3 journalists got killed by bomb blasts carried out by Al-Shabaab. Abdinasir Abdulle Ga’al was a 24-year-old cameraman working for a government-controlled radio station, Somali National Army (SNA). He was killed in Mogadishu in a bomb blast targeting the local military base in Awdheegle, 70 kilometres southwest of Mogadishu. The blast was one of the two attacks carried out by the militants of the Al-Shabaab group. The two other killed journalists were Mohamed Omar Sahal and Hodan Nalayeh. The two TV journalists were among the victims of a suicide attack on the Asasey Hotel.in the Somali port city of Kismayo. Sahal, a 35-year-old correspondent of Somali Broadcasting Corporation in Kismayo, and Nalayeh, a 43-year-old journalist, worked on various TV channels. She had returned to Somalia from Canada and started an online TV station called Integration TV to promote Somalia’s transformation. After the blast, gunmen forced their way into the hotel and went on a shooting spree, which left 26 people dead and 53 others injured, according to media reports…….
29 October – Source: The Frontier – 233 Words
Al Shabaab militants have flogged a man 100 times and suspended him from his town of residence for one year after a court run by the group convicted him of rape. The flogging took place at a public square Monday afternoon in Kuunya Baroow town in the southern province of Lower Shabelle. A local al Shabab judge, who read the verdict at the square said the victim, Hussein Hassan, was found guilty of committing the ‘illegal act.’ Al-Shabab occasionally passes such sentences for sexual offences in areas it controls in Somalia. Under al-Shabab’s interpretation of Sharia law, an unmarried person who has sex before marriage is liable to be given 100 slashes. Anyone who has ever been married – even a divorcee – who has an affair, is liable to be found guilty of adultery, punishable by stoning to death……
OPINION, ANALYSIS AND CULTURE
“Over 25 trucks transporting commercial goods are stuck along the roads from Kismayo, 110 kms away to the south east, according to Deq Hassan Hussein, a local trader in Afmadow. “We usually get supplies from Kismayo but for the last 25 days no goods have come to this town and this has led the traders to increase the prices of the goods they have in their stores,” he said.”
31 October – Source: Radio Ergo – 450 Words
Heavy rains have cut off the southern Somali town of Afmadow, in Lower Juba region, leading to a shortage of food and a drastic rise in prices. The roads from Afmadow to the port city of Kismayo and the border town of Dhobley have become impassable following heavy rains in the last three weeks. The poor roads and lack of supplies have resulted in prices of cereals and vegetables shooting up again. Ali Ahmed Osman told Radio Ergo the situation was getting out of hand as locals cannot afford to get a meal owing to high prices. high prices meant on his average daily income of Somali shilling 90,000 ($3.5) he could not afford to buy enough food for his family. “One kilo of rice which used to cost 16,000 Somali shillings is now 24,000 and that is difficult for us to buy,” he said. “The situation is becoming worse, we have nothing to eat, transport has been affected, nothing comes in or out,” he said.
Over 25 trucks transporting commercial goods are stuck along the roads from Kismayo, 110 kms away to the south-east, according to Deq Hassan Hussein, a local trader in Afmadow. “We usually get supplies from Kismayo but for the last 25 days no goods have come to this town and this has led the traders to increase the prices of the goods they have in their stores,” he said. The prices of 50 kgs of sugar, rice and flour in Afmadow markets cost $45, $37 and $39 respectively. Transport fares have doubled for people travelling to Dhobley, a town some 90 kms west of Afmadow on the Kenyan border. Ahmed Osman Hussein, a local resident, said the fare from Afmadow to Dhobley had risen from $30 to $80. Only a few four-wheel-drive vehicles are attempting the journey, at a price……..