Marka, Somalia (AHN) - More fighters loyal to al Qaeda's surrogate in the Horn of Africa have stormed and confiscated the headquarters of several relief agencies, which opted to weather-out operating in southern Somalia despite a ban from al Shabaab.
Abdi Hajji Hussein - AHN News Correspondent
A resident, who spoke on condition of anonymity for security reasons, told All Headline News from Marka, a town about 90 kilometers (56 miles) south of Mogadishu, that al Shabaab militants looted equipment such as cars and computers belonging to World Concern and Water for Life (WFL) as well as several local relief organizations. The witness believed no aid workers fell into the hands of the hard-line Islamic terror group, but said local residents are outraged.
Hundreds of local residents in Marka and villages nearby expressed how they are sorry for militants' looting, taking to the streets to protest.
Mohammed Abdi Adam, the director of Water for Life is still missing after he was kidnapped by unknown gunmen in July 2008, while traveling in the lower Shabelle region.
"WFL helped Somali needy people in the region and set up free of charge schools to support poor children who can't afford to pay tuition fees while in education," Hassan Yasin, 56, told AHN.
Mr. Yasin said that hundreds of poor children in the region will miss their opportunity to continue education as the country hasn't had an effective functioning central government and WFL was forced to desert Somalia.
Since 2010, al Shabaab has banned more than 20 international aid agencies from operating south-central Somalia.