Thursday November 21, 2019
MOGADISHU (HOL) - The death of prominent Somali-Canadian human rights activist Almaas Elman, who was shot in Mogadishu yesterday, shows the risk faced by activists in the country and underlines the need for the authorities to ensure the safety of civilians, said Amnesty International.“We send our deepest condolences to Almaas’ family and the entire human rights community in Somalia who continue to fight injustice and push for respect for human rights despite the risks,” said Seif Magango, Amnesty International’s Deputy Director for East Africa, the Horn and the Great Lakes.
Almaas was hit by a bullet on 20 November while she was travelling in a car inside the Halane compound in the capital Mogadishu. She died later in hospital as the result of the injuries she sustained. The circumstances of her killing remain unclear.
“While the authorities have launched an investigation into Almaas’ killing, they must ensure that it is impartial, thorough, and effective, and that anyone suspected to be responsible is brought to justice in a fair trial. The authorities must also make the findings of the investigation public as soon as it is concluded.”
Almaas was a prominent and dedicated activist. She worked on social justice, women’s rights and the rehabilitation of children affected by conflict in Somalia. She was also associated with the Elman Peace Centre, an organization working to promote peace in Somalia. Her sister, Ilwad Elman, was nominated for the 2019 Nobel Peace Prize for her work promoting peace in Somalia.
Her father, Elman Ali Ahmed, also peace activist, was assassinated for his work in Mogadishu in 1996.