Media MONITOR:Print
24 March 2012 Daily Media Roundup
03/25/2012
Somalia News Highlights: Puntland's president supports the expansion and extension of EU's anti-piracy program to 2014; late Somali president Yusuf is expected to be buried at his hometown of Galkayo; the Ethiopian troops are set to capture the town of Dhusamareeb from al-Shabaab forces; British security firms reported to dominate the lucrative anti-piracy industry; TFG & AMISOM forces seized Al-Qaeda linked fighters and weapons in security operations in Mogadishu; four Al-Qaeda linked militants were killed in clashes with TFG troops in Beledweyne; three TFG soldiers were killed in clashes over relief goods in Mogadishu; Ethiopian troops are accused of detaining and arresting 20 civilians in Hudur district; Al-Shabaab claimed to have killed a Ugandan soldier and wounding a dozen others in attacks at Hiliwa and Yaqshid military bases; ASWJ vowed to eradicate al-Shabaab from Galgudud with a week; over 500 al-Shabaab fighters are believed to have crossed to Yemen to support Al-Qaeda of the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP); the Somali president paid surprise overnight visits to Mogadishu's front-lines and urged the security forces to tighten security in Mogadishu.

COMMENTARY ON ISLAMIC WEBSITES

Somali Memo - The pro-al-Shabaab Islamist website claimed that the Islamic Administration has announced that they will wage direct war against the colonial armies of Ethiopia. Galgudud's Islamic Administration was fighting against the Ethiopian-supported representative for the past couple of years but starting tomorrow they will wage face-t-face war against the Ethiopian troops at Galgudud's front-lines. Galgudud's Islamic Administrator, Sheikh Awale who spoke to Radio Andalus claimed that his administration is prepared for the fight against the Ethiopian infidels. Somali Language

POLITICS

Garowe Online - President Abdirahman Mohamed Farole welcomed an EU mandate to expand the fight against piracy by fighting pirates on the coast of Somalia, Radio Garowe reports. The EU has agreed to expand and also extend their mission called Operation Atlanta until 2014. President Farole who spoke to BBC Somalia said that he welcomed the new mandate by the EU. "The government is welcoming the new EU mandate as long as they are fighting piracy and pirates and turning the captured pirates to Puntland authorities so they can be tried under our judicial system."

Garowe Online - Former President of Somalia former President Abdullahi Yusuf will be laid to rest in his hometown Galkayo on Sunday, Radio Garowe reports. Prime Minister Abdiweli Mohamed Gaas, who spoke to reporters, said that the Colonel’s body would be brought to Mogadishu where a ceremony for the Colonel will be held before being laid to rest in Galkayo. "On Sunday the body of Colonel Abdullahi Yusuf is expected in Mogadishu where a ceremony will be held before his body will be flown to Galkayo where he will be buried," said Prime Minister Gaas.

SECURITY/AL-SHABAAB

AFP - Hundreds of heavily armed Ethiopian troops advanced into a central Somali town Saturday with the aim of attacking the main stronghold of the Al-Qaeda-linked al-Shabaab militia in the region, witnesses said. A convoy of battle trucks drove into Dhusamareb, which is under the control of a pro-government Somali militia, ahead of a planned attack on the Shebab-controlled town of El Bur, 100 kilometres (60 miles) away, local residents said. "The Ethiopian troops in at least 50 trucks entered Dhusamareb this morning. Their target this time seems to be El Bur district, which is the main base of the Al-Shabaab in central Somalia," said Abdulahi Ahmed, an elder in Dhusamareeb.

The Star - Kenya Defence Forces and Somalia Transitional Federal Government troops yesterday intercepted a convoy of nine trucks loaded with sugar and other contraband smuggled into the country through Liboi. 21 Somali men, who were traveling in the trucks with Somalia registration numbers, were also arrested. The security forces received a tip off from intelligence teams monitoring movements along the Kenya/Somalia border. A senior military operative yesterday confirmed that the trucks loaded with sugar and other assorted contraband goods were intercepted in Dadajabula area near the Kenya/Somalia border as they were being driven towards Liboi on the Kenyan side at about 10:30 am (0830 GMT).

MARITIME

BBC News - The release of a UK hostage in Somalia has drawn attention to the British security firms which are increasingly dominating Somalia's lucrative anti-piracy industry. It was a family ransom which ultimately secured the release of Hertfordshire social worker Judith Tebbutt this week, but there have been media reports of negotiators who paved the way for the 56-year-old's safe return. Andy Bearpark, director of the British Association of Private Security Companies, says negotiators are making "enormous" amounts of money, but carry a heavy burden. "It's a relationship of trust, and as in all negotiations, it's a question of little steps, where you build up that relationship," he said.

RADIO ROUNDUP

Radio Mogadishu - A pro-government radio station

In massive security operations conducted today, the AMISOM-TFG Forces have captured al-Qaeda fighters and weapons in Yaqshid district of Mogadishu. The apprehended fighters were carrying machine guns while hiding among civilians and intending to attack TFG's military bases during the night. Local residents have helped the government forces to capture those anti-peace militias.

The Somali National Forces on Friday night foiled an attempt which the Al-Qaeda linked militias wanted to attack TFG military bases in Beledweyne district of Hiiraan region. Military officials told Radio Mogadishu that the National Forces have killed four Al-Qaeda militias, during brief clashes.

Radio Andalus - A pro-al-Shabaab radio station

At least three pro-infidel militias were killed and two innocent internal displaced women were injured as two TFG militias fought over relief goods in Mogadishu on Saturday. The wounded women were rushed to the Madina hospital of Mogadishu.

Radio Al-Furqaan - A pro-al-Shabaab radio station

Ethiopian troops detained more than 20 residents in Hudur district of Bakol region on Friday and Saturday. Local residents told Radio al-Furqaan that the Ethiopians have tortured the civilians. The TFG militias supported by the Ethiopian troops have entered Hudur district on Thursday after al-Shabaab Mujahideen vacated the district for tactical reasons.

At least a Ugandan soldier was killed and dozen others were injured as al-Shabaab Mujahideens attacked the foreign troop’s bases in Mogadishu on Friday night. The fighting continued over two hours when the Mujahideens have directely entered the Ugandan military bases in Hiliwa and Yaqshid districts. Local residents told Radio al-Furqaan that they could see the ambulances rushing the deceased foreign troops out of Hiliwa district.

Radio Bar-Kulan - An independent radio station

ASWJ officials vowed that they will eradicate al-Shabaab fighters from Galgaadud region within a week. The Chief Commander of ASWJ militias told Radio Bar-kula that they already seized strategic bases from al-Shabaab and will soon reach the entire districts of the region.

Radio Kulmiye - An independent radio station

Conflicting reports of the Yemeni and Somali governments have stated that Somalia's al-Shabaab fighters are entering Yemen to support Al-Qaeda related groups. In a recently issued statement, the Somali Embassy in Sana’a stated that 500 al-Shabaab fighters had arrived on the beaches of Yemen to fight alongside Al-Qaeda linked militants in the Arabian Peninsula. The Yemeni Interior Ministry accused the Somali youth movement of sending nearly 300 armed fighters to Yemen last week to participate in fighting with Al-Qaeda against the Yemeni army.

Somali president Sharif Ahmed accompanied by his special guards, military officials and a team of journalists has made a surprise overnight visit to soldiers at Mogadishu's front-lines. The president had paid visit to several police stations in Mogadishu including Shibis, Shangani, Hamar-Jajab, and other districts in the city. President Sharif Ahmed urged to conduct more active security operations.