Somalia

Mogadishu (AFP) A one-time deputy leader and spokesman for Somalia’s Shabaab insurgents defected to the country’s government on Sunday, a local official said. Muktar Robow was the subject of a $5 million bounty from the United States for his role with the Al-Qaeda linked Islamist militants. But his split with former Shabaab leader Ahmed Abdi Godane four years ago led him to seek safety in his hometown in Somalia’s southwest Bakool region, though he never formally renounced the insurgency. “Muktar Robow defected from Shabaab and he is now in HudurRead More
Mogadishu (AFP) At least five people were killed and ten wounded in Somalia’s capital Mogadishu on Sunday when a car bomb detonated on a busy road, the security ministry said. There was no immediate claim of responsiblity but the bombing fits the pattern of Al-Qaeda linked Shabaab Islamists, who have carried out numerous suicide bombings and raids in the capital targeting civilian, government and military targets. Security ministry spokesman Ahmed Mohamud said five civilians were killed and ten others wounded in the car bomb blast. “It occurred in front ofRead More
Mogadishu (AFP) Shabaab militants in Somalia on Sunday claimed they had killed 39 African Union troops in an ambush in the country’s south. The claim by the Al-Qaeda linked insurgents, made by the group’s spokesman on an affiliated radio station, could not be immediately verified. Local residents did confirm to AFP that fighting had taken place Sunday in the Lower Shebelle region, a hotly contested area where Shabaab’s spokesman said they had staged their ambush. “The mujahedeen fighters stood over the dead bodies of 39 soldiers, among them senior commanders”,Read More
Mogadishu (AFP) Somalia rejoined the world wide web on Monday, more than three weeks after internet access was cut when a container ship damaged an undersea cable connecting the Horn of Africa nation to the world. “The technical issue, which has disrupted the internet connection, is resolved and the service is now resumed,” telecommunications minister Abdi Anshur Hassan told a press conference in the capital Mogadishu. The blackout affected the majority of the 6.5 million people living in Somalia’s south-central region, cutting off access to everything from hotel booking sitesRead More
Mogadishu (AFP) Last month, a baby was born in the Somali capital Mogadishu with a terrible eye defect that requires treatment abroad. The infant was cleared for treatment in Turkey but before the paperwork was complete a container ship, believed to be the Panama-flagged MSC Alice, docked outside Mogadishu port, accidentally dragging its anchor through the main fibre optic cable connecting Somalia with the rest of the world. Since that evening of June 24 most of the Horn of Africa nation has been cut off from the web, costing itRead More
Baidoa (Somalia) (AFP) As a teenager, Aden Hussein chose to become a refugee to get an education. With Somalia in collapse, he left his family for neighbouring Kenya where Dadaab, one of the largest and oldest refugee camps in the world, offered a de-facto city served by the UN and dozens of aid agencies. “There I had free education,” he told AFP. Last August, six years after arriving, Hussein, now 21, took advantage of a repatriation package offered to Somali refugees when the Kenyan government said it would close theRead More
Mogadishu (AFP) Five people were killed and 10 were wounded Thursday when a car packed with explosives rammed into the wall of a police station in southern Mogadishu, the security ministry said. “The blast was caused by a car loaded with explosives, five people were killed and 10 others wounded,” Ahmed Mohamud Mohamed, Somalia’s internal security ministry spokesman told reporters. Police officer Abdukadir Moalim said a suicide bomber had driven the car into the outer wall of the Waberi police station, killing mostly civilians. Witnesses said the blast led toRead More
Mogadishu (AFP) At least 10 people were killed when Shabaab Islamists drove an explosives-laden minibus into local government offices in the Somali capital Mogadishu on Tuesday, according to the security ministry. The minibus was rammed through a security barrier outside offices in the southern district of Wadajir, injuring nine people including the district’s top government official. “More than 10 people died in the blast which was carried out by the Shabaab group and nine others are wounded,” said security ministry spokesman Ahmed Mohamud Mohamed. Most of the dead were civilians,Read More
Mogadishu (AFP) A Somali military court sentenced a naval officer to death Monday for shooting dead the minister of public works in what the defense argued was an accident. A young minister seen as an inspiration to many in the conflict-torn nation, Abbas Abdullahi Siraji, 31, was killed last month when armed guards shot at his vehicle outside the presidential palace. The naval officer, Ahmed Abdullahi Abdi, 29, a bodyguard to the auditor-general — who was fired after the incident — was arrested and charged with the minister’s murder. “AfterRead More
Mogadishu (AFP) A suicide car bombing and armed assault by six Shabaab militants on two neighbouring restaurants in Somalia’s capital Mogadishu ended Thursday morning with at least 18 dead, the government said. “The operation is over now and the gunmen were killed by the security forces,” said Mohamed Ahmed Arab, spokesman for Somalia’s security ministry. He said the six attackers — one suicide bomber and five gunmen — “attacked business places and killed innocent civilians: 18 civilians were killed, including a Syrian national, and more than 10 others were wounded.”Read More