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CrisisWatch Somalia

Unchanged Situation

Al-Shabaab continued to attack civilian and military targets in capital Mogadishu and rural areas, especially in Lower Shabelle region in south east. In Mogadishu, Al-Shabaab claimed car bombings 8 and 24 May that killed at least thirteen people. In Lower Shabelle, Al-Shabaab ambushed Ethiopian troops in African Union mission (AMISOM) near Leego village 1 May, and attacked Qoryoley village 14 May wounding at least two Somali National Army (SNA) soldiers. Al-Shabaab 9 May seized control of Goof Gaduud town, Bay region, overrunning local SNA base and killing at least seven soldiers. U.S. soldier killed in operation against Al-Shabaab at Bari, Lower Shabelle 40km west of Mogadishu 4 May. Govt 8 May reported death of four Al-Shabaab militants, including Lower Shabelle regional leader Moalin Osman Abdi Badil, in SNA raid in Bariire village. Unclaimed blast at checkpoint in Lower Shabelle 8 May killed at least two SNA soldiers. Unidentified gunmen assassinated prominent elder in Mogadishu 11 May. Security forces 3 May killed minister Abas Abdullahi Sheikh near presidential palace in Mogadishu, allegedly mistaking him for insurgent. Islamic State (ISIS) claimed 23 May suicide bombing at police checkpoint in Bosaso that killed three people. Somali pirates hijacked Iranian fishing vessel off Hobyo in Puntland 23 May taking crew hostage. At 11 May London Somalia Conference, President Farmajo unsuccessfully called for lifting of arms embargo; EU and UK pledged new funds to avert famine and support security sector reform.

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Reports & Briefings

In The News

24 May 2017
There is clearly an IS threat in Puntland, and the [group of former Shabaab cleric Mumin] is escalating its activities and attacks, but Al-Shabaab remains a much bigger threat in Puntland than IS does. AFP

Rashid Abdi

Project Director, Horn of Africa
10 May 2017
Somalia and the international community have a good change to take advantage of [the London Conference on Somalia], but if pledges are not followed up that will create problems for Somalia. Voice of America

Rashid Abdi

Project Director, Horn of Africa
3 May 2017
The Ethiopian government backed a different candidate, so there was speculation that the new Somali president may actually be hostile to Ethiopia. RFI

Rashid Abdi

Project Director, Horn of Africa
17 Apr 2017
Somalia has always remained strategic to the geopolitics of the region and beyond and has been gaining importance with time as the conditions in the country improve. AllAfrica

Rashid Abdi

Project Director, Horn of Africa
6 Mar 2017
[Farmajo] should turn his attention firmly [to strengthening the army] and appeal to the West and Arab countries to give Somali troops proper training, equipment, salary. Voice of America

Rashid Abdi

Project Director, Horn of Africa
3 Mar 2017
The concern in Washington [about Al-Shabaab in Somalia] has been mounting for some time now ... U.S. special forces are already on the ground. Drone attacks have been scaled up. The Seattle Times

Rashid Abdi

Project Director, Horn of Africa

Latest Updates

Statement / Africa

The London Conference and Prospects for Peace and Stability in Somalia

The 11 May 2017 London Conference on Somalia will discuss boosting humanitarian aid and security reforms that will increase the army’s numbers to 18,000. But the government must tackle corruption and restart national reconciliation if it wants to build effectively on recent progress toward ending the 25-year conflict.

Commentary / Africa

Somalia: Transforming Hope into Stability

Somalia has a genuine opportunity to promote needed political and security reforms following the election of a new president and renewed international interest. In this excerpt from the Watch List 2017 – First Update early-warning report for European policy makers, Crisis Group urges the European Union to seize the momentum by achieving consensus with its international partners on realistic goals ahead of the upcoming London Conference on Somalia in May. 

Terrorism and Counter-terrorism: New Challenges for the European Union

Despite suffering significant blows in Syria and Iraq, jihadist movements across the Middle East, North Africa and Lake Chad regions continue to pose significant challenges. In this excerpt from the Watch List 2017 – First Update early-warning report for European policy makers, Crisis Group urges the European Union and its member states to prioritise conflict prevention at the heart of their counter-terrorism policy and continue investment in vulnerable states.

Statement / Global

Instruments of Pain: Conflict and Famine

For the first time in three decades, four countries, driven by war, verge on famine. Over coming weeks, Crisis Group will publish special briefings on Yemen, South Sudan, Somalia and Nigeria. Each conflict requires tailored response; all need increased aid and efforts to end the violence.

Statement / Africa

Twelve Points for the New African Union Commission Chairperson

Africa is experiencing the highest number of humanitarian crises since the 1990s. As the new chair of the African Union Commission, Moussa Faki Mahamat, takes office, International Crisis Group suggests how he can strengthen the organisation’s response to threats to continental peace and security.

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