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January 26 - February 1, 2015

Domestic Media Monitoring Report for Somalia
Posted on February 1, 2015

Compiled by Laura Metcalfe

Somali Chief Justice Says Majority In Jail Are From Minority
January 27th , Mareeg Media

  • Somalia’s chief justice has said the majority of inmates in Mogadishu are from minority groups.
  • The justice also described the appalling conditions in the war torn state prisons, noting that two inmates at Baidoa prison died due to the conditions in the facility.

Two Warring Clans Clinch Peace Deal in Afgooye
Garowe Online, January 28th

  • Traditional leaders representing two warring clans have signed a nine-point agreement in Afogoye.
  • Anyone who breaches the peace deal will face justice in line with customary laws and the constitution.
  • The two sides agreed that the army and police should be deployed in the areas where clashes took place, and that clan militias in lower Shabelle will be trained and demobilized.

Acute Food Insecurity Persists, Says UN Agency
Garowe Online, January 29

  • Despite improvement in agricultural products in some areas, the UN agency for Food and Agriculture warns of acute malnourishment and severe food insecurity.
  • FAO stated that 731,000 persons, mainly IDPs will continue to face acute food insecurity until June.
  • An estimated 202,600 children under the age of five are acutely malnourished.
  • Livestock conditions have improved and the prices of staple foods has returned to normal during Deyr season.

Encircling Mogadishu: Invasion Under the Radar
Raxanreeb, February 1st

  • While Somali leaders have been consumed with infighting, Ethiopia has been slowly creeping back into Somalia
  • While leaders have fought, Ethiopian troops, under the banner of AMISOM have positioned themselves in all corners of the country.
  • The Ethiopian troops are replacing the departing Sierra Leonean forces and the Ugandan forces that are allegedly getting ready for the next push against Al Shabaab.
  • Ultimately, the Ethiopians will be in a position to encircle Mogadishu
  • The animosity between the two countries goes on for centuries. Unlike Somalis, Ethiopians have not forgotten the humiliations they suffered at the hand of Somalis. The war crimes committed by Ethiopians against Somalis during its 2006 American-backed invasion are well documented.
  • The tragedy is not that they’re back but that they’ve been welcomed by the Somali elite.
  • In Ethiopia-controlled areas, parallel administrations have been set up, with administrative officials answering to the Ethiopian military.
  • What can be done? The solution is not a violent confrontation with Ethiopians but a genuine reconciliation among Somalis. We should not seek to destroy Ethiopia but we should seek to be free of its tyranny and occupation.  

Somali Lawmakers unanimously warn PM Sharmarke on returning President key allies
January 26th , Raxanreeb

  • Lawmakers have unanimously warned the PM against involvement of some members of the former government in the new cabinet.
  • 150 MPs called on the PM not to include individuals involved in the recent political standoffs between the former PM and the President in his cabinet.
  • The officials in question are thought to be former Justice Minister Farah Sheikh Abdulkadir, Finance Minister Husseing Abdu Haldane, and National Security minister Abdikarim Hussein Gulled.  The PM has already dismissed a cabinet involving these individuals after a no confidence vote in parliament.

PM Shamarke Gives New Faces Portfolios
Garowe Online, January 27th

  • Somalia’s PM has announced his new cabinet lineup and is seeking parliamentary approval for the second time in two weeks.
  • Three women secured portfolios, along with two key Presidential allies.
  • The PM said in a statement that he had held consultations with the President, the Speaker, MPs, and Civil Society before determining his cabinet.

Third Ahlu Sunna Cleric Shot

Ahlu Sunna Cleric Shot Dead in Baidoa, Third in Month February 14, Garowe Online

  • An Ahlu Sunnah-aligned cleric was gunned down in Baidoa, the third to be killed within a month
  • The cleric was shot by two masked gunmen on his way home from a nearby mosque.
  • The men escaped, but authorities have reported that they have three suspects in custody.
  • Al Shabaab has not claimed responsibility for the attack.

Detained Journalists Face Delays

Mogadishu Court Postpones Trial of Radio Journalists
February 15, Dalsan Radio

  • A regional court in Mogadishu has postponed the trial of two journalists for the fourth time.
  • The two men, from Shabelle and Sky FM, are accused of incitement. They have been in detention since their arrest in August 2014.
  • The owner of both stations is also in prison
  • International media advocacy groups have called on the Somali government to free the detained journalists 

Somali Detained Journalists Seek Justice
February 15, Shabelle News

  • Somalia’s detained journalists have been brought before the regional Banadir court in Mogadishu.
  • The judge confirmed the cases would be tried as soon as possible, but the trial was delayed after witnesses and evidence were not brought before the court.
  • A hearing has been rescheduled for March 1st
  • Radio Shabelle’s lawyer blamed Somali authorities for the delays, accusing them of politicizing the trial
  • The NUSOJ has requested the men be freed on bail, but the judge rejected the suggestion.

Somaliland Denies Supporting Al Shabaab
February 16th , Garowe Online

  • Somaliland’s separatist administration has denied Puntland’s accusations that the breakaway state supports Al Shabaab.
  • The Minister for the Interior says there is no tangible evidence to support Puntland’s claims. He went on to say that Puntland’s Security Minister is now recognized by Somaliland as a criminal, and will not be allowed to enter the region.
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