Wednesday, May 22, 2013
Today from Hiiraan Online:
Thousands flee Somalia violence
Sunday, February 19, 2012
The UN refugee agency has voiced fears for the safety of thousands of people who have fled fresh violence near the Somali capital, Mogadishu, and urged all armed groups to ensure the safety of civilians. A surge of people has flocked the war torn Mogadishu after the African Union and Somali army warned of an imminent attack in the al-Shabaab bases outside Mogadishu.
UNHCR in a statement said in the last two weeks, over 7,200 Somalis have been forced to flee the Afgooye corridor, a 40-kilometre stretch of road just north-west of Mogadishu that is home to almost 410,000 internally displaced persons (IDPs) living in sprawling settlements and makeshift camps.
The government wants to beef up security of the people who are returning so that al-Shabaab doesn’t infiltrate as IDPs.
The Somali Transitional Federal Government with the backing of more than 12,000 troops have pushed the al-Shabaab from Mogadishu but a famous politician in Mogadishu calls on the forces not to focus more on securing large areas but to create a safer zone in Mogadishu.
The weak Western-backed transition government in Mogadishu has been battling Al-Shabaab from Uganda, Burundi and Djibouti. Locals in these areas are also reporting planes circulating the areas creating panic among the people who are suffering from a two decade civil war, a deadly drought and now fresh violence that is threatening the livelihood of the tens of thousands of Somalis.
“Somalia continues to generate the highest number of refugees following a two decade civil war and the 2011 Somalia famine. Now Mogadishu is bracing itself for another surge of displaced persons as the Somali and AU troops plan on pushing further into the al-Shabaab stronghold”.
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