Should the Somali president open talks with Al-Shabaab?

Fatuma Ahmed Ali, United States International University A political settlement between the Federal Government of Somalia and terror group Al-Shabaab has eluded both parties for years. Now newly elected Somali President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed Farmajo has indicated that he would be open to talks with the militants. But he also made it clear that if …

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Money from Middle East fuels tensions in Horn of Africa

Martin Plaut, School of Advanced Study Relations between the Horn of Africa and the Arabian Peninsula go back centuries, with trade playing a key component in binding their people together. Religion has also played a part. The expansion of Wahhabism – the interpretation of Islam propagated by Saudi Arabia – has been funded by the …

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The challenges of holding an election in Somalia

Fatuma Ahmed Ali, United States International University Somalia is holding elections that are exciting, historic and complex. The election of the 54 members of the Upper House of Parliament has kicked off in the capitals of the various federal states. The election of the 275 members of the Lower House of Parliament (House of the …

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Has Al Shabaab been weakened for good?

Stig Jarle Hansen, Norwegian University of Life Sciences Several analysts have highlighted the supposed weakening of Al Shabaab, the violent Somali Islamist militant group. The Somali foreign minister Abdisalam Hadliyeh Omer claimed recently for example that the Al-Qaeda allied terrorist outfit controls less than 10% of Somali territories. Omer could also point to Mogadishu’s hosting …

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Exclusive: Interview with Committee to Protect Journalists’ Sue Valentine

In a news release dated January 6, the Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ) judged 2015 to be the “fourth most deadly year on record for journalists.” It said that 71 journalists were killed in the line of duty, with 42 percent of them (30 individuals) murdered by the so-called Islamic State. According to the news …

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