Media MONITOR:Print
2 April 2012 Daily Media Roundup
04/02/2012
Somalia News Highlights: Turkish Ambassador restates Turkey's commitment to reconstruction of Somalia; al-Shabaab warns Kenya of retribution for the invasion of Somalia; Hundreds of families are displaced by clan clashes in Kenya; NATO navies hail anti-piracy best management practices by recent drop in hijackings; Somali pirates threaten to kill South Korean and Indian hostages in a video; Turkey provides clean water to 300,000 Mogadishu residents by digging wells; Somali media watchdog calls on Somaliland to release arrested journalist; people displaced by conflict start to return to Mogadishu; TFG police forces shoot and kill two armed men in Mogadishu; al-Shabaab militants assassinate a top Somali security officer in Mogadishu; Sheikh Aweys openly criticizes al-Shabaab's inhumane acts against civilians; severe drought and water shortages reported in parts of Puntland State; and chairman of Balad district accuses al-Shabaab of civilian rights violations.

COMMENTARY ON ISLAMIC WEBSITES

Somali Memo - The pro-al-Shabaab Islamist website has claimed that the diasporas of the Ayr sub-clan of Habargidir have expressed their opposition to the invasion of Ethiopian troops into the Galmudug region, inhabited by their clan members. The Ayr diasporas in North America, Europe and Middle East have allegedly called for the Ethiopian troops to vacate Galmudug immediately or actions will be taken against them. Somali Language

POLITICS

Mareeg - Statement released by the Turkish Ambassador to Somalia: "The government and the people of Turkey are committed to assisting you in your struggle to rebuild your country and institutions, and to move this great country of yours to a new era where your focus is about rebuilding national infrastructure, economic development and advancement of education. The Somali people do not deserve to be in the middle of this long-running conflict, living in peace and pursuing prosperity should be your destiny and this is within your hands. We have made this decision to be a partner with you because our perception of Somali people, we believe Somalia is a great country, and that the Somali people are struggling with a temporary and unfortunate situation."

SECURITY/AL-SHABAAB

AFP - Somalia’s al-Shabaab on Sunday warned Kenya of retribution and revenge attacks for sending tanks and troops across the border almost six months ago to fight the Islamist rebels. "The Kenyan public must be aware that the more Kenyan troops continue to persecute innocent Muslims of Somalia, the less secure Kenyan cities will be; and the more oppression the Muslims of Somalia feel, the more constricted Kenyan life will be. Such is the law of retribution," the group said in a statement.

IRIN News - Hundreds of families in the central county of Isiolo have been displaced as deadly clashes pitting the Borana, Somali and Turkana communities escalate. Ibrahim Sheikh Mohamud, a leader from the neighbouring Wajir region, told IRIN that at least 210 Isiolo families have been taken to the Anjara area in Wajir West in the past week. "They are now settled at Anjara but they sleep in the open. Almost all the children have pneumonia and malaria. They need tents, food assistance and drugs," Mohamud told IRIN in Isiolo. Among those fleeing the violence are widows, orphaned children and livestock herders who have lost their herds to raiders in the past year.

MARITIME

Reuters - The hijacking success rate for Somali pirates has dropped sharply in recent months, a NATO official said on Monday, due in part to more merchant ships turning to armed security guards, razor wire and water pumps to protect themselves. Improved international cooperation on combating piracy on land and at sea - covering an area four times the size of the Arabian peninsula - has been the cornerstone of efforts to tackle a problem costing the world economy up to $12 billion a year, a spokesman for NATO's counter-piracy force in the Indian Ocean said. "Only six vessels have been pirated for ransom in the last eight months, compared to 36 in the preceding eight," Lieutenant Commander Mehmet Elyurek told reporters on board the TCG Giresun, the Turkish flagship of the force that operates off the Horn of Africa.

Somali Channel TV - Somali pirates are threatening to kill South Korean and Indian sailors if those nations do not free pirates they have captured and intend to try in court. Both countries, which have used their navies to attack pirates, refuse to directly deal with kidnappers. A new video showing captured South Korean sailors is re-focusing attention on the hostages. A video broadcast by the independent Somali Channel shows the ship's master, chief engineer, chief mate and second mate being held at gunpoint on land. They explain that their captors demand millions of dollars in compensation for the families of pirates who were killed last year by South Korea's navy. Speaking on the video, one of those kidnapped, Lee Sang-ho, said there are other demands, as well.

HUMANITARIAN

Todays Zaman - Turkey's State Waterworks Authority (DSİ) has drilled wells in the Somali capital of Mogadishu, providing clean water to 30,000 Somalis. According to DSİ officials, DSİ drilled wells in Mogadishu so that people staying in tent camps as well as in other parts of the city can access an adequate supply of clean water, the Anatolia news agency reported on Monday. Ahmet Şekerci, DSİ's project official in Mogadishu, told Anatolia they would continue to dig wells to help meet the needs of the Somali people.

MEDIA

All Africa - The National Union of Somali Journalists (NUSOJ) has today made an urgent appeal to the Somaliland Authorities to release TV journalist held by the police in Las Anod District of Sool Region in northern Somalia. According to information from Las Anod, Ahmed Ali Farah,a reporter with Somali 24 TV, was arrested on Saturday, 31 March 2012 at around 12:00 pm local time. Farah was accused of being among the team of journalists who were reporting from Taleex Conference, which culminated in the announcement of the new Khatumo State. "It is not the journalist who organized the conference nor did he proclaim the new state. His job as a journalist was to report the event and what took place, for which he should not be arrested," said NUSOJ Secretary General Omar Faruk Osman.

OP-ED

Garowe Online - The editorial calls for the Somali peace process not to reward terrorists and those denouncing violence must be rehabilitated before participating the reconciliation processes. "If he reforms, Col. Aweys must be willing to surrender weapons, must allow loyal fighters to participate in the national rehabilitation program, and he must withdraw from Somali politics."

RADIO ROUNDUP

Radio Mogadishu - A pro-government radio station

The displaced people in Elasha-biyaha, Lafole, Arbiska, Siinka-dheer, Alamada and the other villages on the outskirts of Mogadishu have started to return back to the capital, as the TFG security forces have stabilized Mogadishu and it is reported hundreds of people entered the capital over the last 24 hours.

TFG's security forces on Sunday night have shot and killed two men who wanted to create chaos in Dharkinlay district of Mogadishu. The bodies of the two men were presented to the media on Monday. The Chief Commander of Somali Police Force Sharif Shekhina Maye have thanked the forces who killed the armed men, and he urged police to tighten security.

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

The former Somali Prime Minister Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo has formed a new political party called "Tayo" and he has indicated an interest to run for the upcoming presidential election. The former minister of Womens' Affairs, Maryam Kasim, was elected as the chairperson of Tayo party, while Farmajo serves as the Secretary General.

Radio Andalus - A pro-al-Shabaab radio station

Undercover mujahideen fighters have shot and killed a top pro-infidel security officer at Bakara Market in Mogadishu on Monday night. It is also reported that a huge explosion was targeted at Ethiopian infidel troops in the Baidoa town of Bay region, which caused huge casualties to the enemy.

Radio Kulmiye - An independent radio station

Hassan Dahir Aweys, former Somali leader of the Hizbul-Islam faction, has openly expressed his opposition to al-Shabaab's inhumane acts. Sheikh Aweys stated that al-Shabaab are gangsters who shed the blood of innocent civilians without any justification. This is an unprecedented stand since Sheikh Aweys was not known before to use strong language against the imilitants. Sheikh Aweys has also mentioned that al-Shabaab group is not making any progress towards piety.

Radio Bar-Kulan - An independent radio station

A persistent drought is reported to be threatening the lives of local herders and their livestock at coastal areas of Puntland’s Bari region. The affected areas include Bargal, Alula, Hafun and Beyla where hundreds of local pastoralist communities are facing acute water shortages as the water reservoirs in the area have dried up. Kashe Karur, a resident of Bargal, told Bar-Kulan Radio that the drought situation is getting worse by the day, and it is a major concern for the locals since they risk losing their livelihoods.

Radio Shabelle - An independent radio station

TFG's chairman for the Balad district of Middle Shabelle region has accused al-Shabaab fighters of daily harassment of innocent people in that district. The Balad chairman told Radio Shabelle that more than 40 people including women, children and youths are now under al-Shabaab custody and the insurgents have killed, tortured and arrested local residents in Balad.