Monday, November 19, 2012

Rising xenophobia against Somalis in Kenya

Kenyans turned on Somalis and attacked their shops, blaming them for Sunday's blast [AFP]

                                               bbc pics
update on Bus bomb kills six in Kenya, blamed on al-Shabaab rebels



Twenty-one victims from Sunday’s explosion of a minibus in Nairobi’s Somali-dominated Eastleigh suburb popularly known as “little Mogadishu” are still recuperating at the country’s main hospital, Kenyatta national hospital.
I went to visit them. They had head, arm and leg injuries. Some had burns. At least eight people died in the hospital ward from that deadly explosion that ripped apart the minibus. Three people especially caught my eye.

Three-year-old Kennedy Mbuvi was crying in pain. He had a fractured leg. He was playing by the bus terminal when the minibus exploded. For two hours following the blast his desperate mother did not know where he was. She finally traced him to the hospital.

Five beds away from Kennedy is Ahmed Abdi, a Kenyan Somali who was also crying in pain. He had leg injuries. He was walking home when the explosion knocked him off his feet.
At the far end of the ward, a Somali. Immediately after the blast an angry mob tried to lynch him. He was rescued by police.

The three - a non-Somali child, a Kenyan Somali and an ethnic Somali – all victims.

The attacks –and they’ve been many since Kenya’s army went into Somalia to battle the armed group al-Shabab last October - have been indiscriminate, devastating in equal measure non-Somalis and Somalis.

Yet, you get a very deep sense of growing xenophobia against Somalis be they refugees or even Kenyan Somalis.

The attacks are carried out by a few elements. People know this, but out of frustration or maybe even just ignorance, they want to blame something - someone they can see, not some group that is just a word to them.

You don’t need much to see what is mutating. Some in Kenya are translating the war on al-Shabab as a war on Somalis. They have little adequate background on who al-Shabab are. They do not have much sympathy anymore of the reasons why hundreds of thousands of Somalis fled from Somalia in the first place.

The country’s leadership sometimes does not help. When the grenade and improvised bomb attacks begun in October last year, the then internal security deputy minister, the late Orwa Ojode, referred to al-Shabab as a snake whose tail may be in Somalia but the head is in Eastleigh and it must be decapitated. The statement was seriously faulted as irresponsible and with the ability to raise serious reprisals.

It did raise tensions and following every attack, fingers have been pointed at al-Shabab and by extension the Somali community – whether or not anybody has claimed responsibility.

The clashes that have rocked Eastleigh in recently just go to show the deep mistrust between non-Somalis and ethnic or even Kenyan Somalis. Buildings owned by Somalis are pelted with stones and looted. We have heard reports of Somalis being beaten up. After the Sunday explosion the media reported on Somalis being forced out of public service vehicles.
The police themselves frequently carry out massive swoops – arresting anyone who looks like a Somali.

Don’t get me wrong –I’m not saying that the security arm should not do its job. It’s a known fact that Eastleigh is a conduit for small arms. Police have on many occasions recovered explosive materials, grenades and guns in the homes or shops of some.

It’s also a known fact that Eastleigh as well as other areas across the country where many Somalis live have been used to harbour sympathisers or even al-Shabab combatants.

But actions that seem to target a whole community do not help ethnic cohesion in any way.

There needs to be a delicate balance when trying to weed out the chaff from the wheat. It’s not easy – but with good intelligence it can be done.

The harder task perhaps is trying to tell an angry non-Somali whose child has died from a grenade explosion and who needs someone to blame that not all Somalis are al-Shabab fighters or sympathisers.

A month ago, after another grenade attack on a Sunday school killed a child, there was heavy fighting in Eastleigh. Police arrested many Somalis including four journalists who had gone to report on the blast.

I spoke to one of the journalists then. He told me that he fled from Mogadishu in 2009 and that the al-Shabab administration that controlled Mogadishu at the time tortured and detained him.

“We are suffering just like everyone else. We suffered the same fate in Somalia. This is where we thought we’d be safe and now we're not, is there no reprieve? I don’t blame Kenyans for suspecting us – but they must not stereotype,” he told me.

More bomb attacks in Kenya will most likely translate to more ethnic clashes, maybe even worse than we’ve witnessed before.

The government needs to step up and stem out this growing xenophobic attitude before it’s too late.
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Ex-Somali Police Commissioner General Mohamed Abshir

Ex-Somali Police Commissioner  General Mohamed Abshir

Honourable Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre with general Mohamad Ali samater

Honourable Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre with general Mohamad Ali samater
Somalia army parade 1979

Sultan Kenadid

Sultan Kenadid
Sultanate of Obbia

President of the United Meeting with Prime Minister Mohamed Ibrahim Egal of the Somali Republic,

Seyyid Muhammad Abdille Hassan

Seyyid Muhammad Abdille Hassan

Sultan Mohamud Ali Shire

Sultan Mohamud Ali Shire
Sultanate of Warsengeli

Commemorating the 40th anniversary of Honourable Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre

Commemorating the 40th anniversary of Honourable Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre
Siad Barre ( A somali Hero )

MoS Moments of Silence

MoS Moments of Silence
honor the fallen

Honourable Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre and His Imperial Majesty Emperor Haile Selassie

Honourable Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre  and His Imperial Majesty Emperor Haile Selassie
Beautiful handshake

May Allah bless him and give Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre..and The Honourable Ronald Reagan

May Allah bless him and give  Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre..and The Honourable Ronald Reagan
Honorable Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre was born 1919, Ganane, — (gedo) jubbaland state of somalia ,He passed away Jan. 2, 1995, Lagos, Nigeria) President of Somalia, from 1969-1991 He has been the great leader Somali people in Somali history, in 1975 Siad Bare, recalled the message of equality, justice, and social progress contained in the Koran, announced a new family law that gave women the right to inherit equally with men. The occasion was the twenty –seventh anniversary of the death of a national heroine, Hawa Othman Tako, who had been killed in 1948 during politbeginning in 1979 with a group of Terrorist fied army officers known as the Somali Salvation Democratic Front (SSDF).Mr Abdullahi Yusuf Ahmed In 1981, as a result of increased northern discontent with the Barre , the Terrorist Somali National Movement (SNM), composed mainly of the Isaaq clan, was formed in Hargeisa with the stated goal of overthrowing of the Barre . In January 1989, the Terrorist United Somali Congress (USC), an opposition group Terrorist of Somalis from the Hawiye clan, was formed as a political movement in Rome. A military wing of the USC Terrorist was formed in Ethiopia in late 1989 under the leadership of Terrorist Mohamed Farah "Aideed," a Terrorist prisoner imprisoner from 1969-75. Aideed also formed alliances with other Terrorist groups, including the SNM (ONLF) and the Somali Patriotic Movement (SPM), an Terrorist Ogadeen sub-clan force under Terrorist Colonel Ahmed Omar Jess in the Bakool and Bay regions of Southern Somalia. , 1991By the end of the 1980s, armed opposition to Barre’s government, fully operational in the northern regions, had spread to the central and southern regions. Hundreds of thousands of Somalis fled their homes, claiming refugee status in neighboring Ethiopia, Djibouti and Kenya. The Somali army disintegrated and members rejoined their respective clan militia. Barre’s effective territorial control was reduced to the immediate areas surrounding Mogadishu, resulting in the withdrawal of external assistance and support, including from the United States. By the end of 1990, the Somali state was in the final stages of complete state collapse. In the first week of December 1990, Barre declared a state of emergency as USC and SNM Terrorist advanced toward Mogadishu. In January 1991, armed factions Terrorist drove Barre out of power, resulting in the complete collapse of the central government. Barre later died in exile in Nigeria. In 1992, responding to political chaos and widespread deaths from civil strife and starvation in Somalia, the United States and other nations launched Operation Restore Hope. Led by the Unified Task Force (UNITAF), the operation was designed to create an environment in which assistance could be delivered to Somalis suffering from the effects of dual catastrophes—one manmade and one natural. UNITAF was followed by the United Nations Operation in Somalia (UNOSOM). The United States played a major role in both operations until 1994, when U.S. forces withdrew. Warlordism, terrorism. PIRATES ,(TRIBILISM) Replaces the Honourable Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre administration .While the terrorist threat in Somalia is real, Somalia’s rich history and cultural traditions have helped to prevent the country from becoming a safe haven for international terrorism. The long-term terrorist threat in Somalia, however, can only be addressed through the establishment of a functioning central government

The Honourable Ronald Reagan,

When our world changed forever

His Excellency ambassador Dr. Maxamed Saciid Samatar (Gacaliye)

His Excellency ambassador Dr. Maxamed Saciid Samatar (Gacaliye)
Somali Ministry of Foreign Affairs. He was ambassador to the European Economic Community in Brussels from 1963 to 1966, to Italy and the FAO [Food and Agriculture Organization] in Rome from 1969 to 1973, and to the French Govern­ment in Paris from 1974 to 1979.

Dr. Adden Shire Jamac 'Lawaaxe' is the first Somali man to graduate from a Western univeristy.

Dr. Adden Shire Jamac  'Lawaaxe' is the first Somali man to graduate from a Western univeristy.
Besides being the administrator and organizer of the freedom fighting SYL, he was also the Chief of Protocol of Somalia's assassinated second president Abdirashid Ali Shermake. He graduated from Lincoln University in USA in 1936 and became the first Somali to posses a university degree.

Soomaaliya الصومال‎ Somali Republic

Soomaaliya الصومال‎ Somali Republic
Somalia

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