SOMALIA – PM declared a national disaster on Tuesday. The UN estimates five million people now face starvation. Thousands have streamed into the capital Mogadishu in search of food. The r deaths announced by PM HASSAN Ali Khaire come from the Bay region of South West Somalia.
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SOMALIA – Deaths were a result of Al Shabab attack on a African Union base. The African Union comprises of 22,000 soldiers from five countries – including Ethiopia, Kenya, Burundi and Uganda. They are backed by US air power – including drone strikes which have targeted Al Shabab operatives.
If the gun men who are currently being evicted from the Westgate Shopping Centre in Nairobi are indeed from the Islamist group, known as al Shabab, then the people of conflict-torn Somalia better be prepared for more war.
Both Kenya and Ethiopia unilaterally decided to launch an invasion of a country that has never accepted a foreign power, let alone a Christian one, when the Islamic Courts movement had gained control of Somalia bringing to it some semblance of stability.
The result was to restore an unpopular and corrupt government in Mogadishu, which was backed by American drone strikes and some Western money.
At the time, there were warnings from al-Shabab that the countries responsible would pay for this.
Those who ignored them, need to explain their decisions in the light of the dreadful events of the last three days.
A further invasion, incursion by outside powers, will breed more violence, for clearly the men who attacked shoppers last Saturday, were prepared to take the fight back into the countries they see as their enemy.
That means Somalia which has known decade after decade of war, since the eighties, will still not have a stable central government that will protect and serve its people, millions of whom wonder the world as refugees.
As UN inspectors were investigating claims that Sarin gas was used against civilians in Damascus, Lakhdar Brahimi, joint UN-Arab League envoy to Syria said, in a briefing to journalists: “It does seem clear that some kind of substance was used… that killed a lot of people” on 21 August.
But he also emphasised that any military action would need Security Council authorisation.
A UN diplomat confirmed that the permanent members of the UN Security Council will reconvene in New York today at 14:30 local time (17:30 GMT).
Here are examples of interventions that did pass through the Security Council:
Iraq 1991: US-led global military coalition, anchored in international law; explicit mandate from UN Security Council to evict Iraqi forces from Kuwait
Balkans 1990s: US arms supplied to anti-Serb resistance in Croatia and Bosnia in defiance of UN-mandated embargo; later US-led air campaign against Serb paramilitaries. In 1999, US jets provided bulk of 38,000 Nato sorties against Serbia to prevent massacres in Kosovo – legally controversial with UN Security Council resolutions linked to “enforcement measures”
Somalia 1992-93: UN Security Council authorised creation of international force with aim of facilitating humanitarian supplies as Somali state failed. Gradual US military involvement without clear objective culminated in Black Hawk Down disaster in 1993. US troops pulled out
Libya 2011: France and UK sought UN Security Council authorisation for humanitarian operation in Benghazi in 2011. Russia and China abstained but did not veto resolution. Air offensive continued until fall of Gaddafi.
In an interview with the newspaper al-Hayat, the UN and Arab League envoy to Syria, Lakhdar Brahimi, said Syria could collapse, like Somalia, into a failed state controlled by warlords.
“This type of crisis – if not dealt with correctly day by day – can go on for a year, two years and more.
“People are talking about the risk of partition in Syria. I do not see partition.I believe that if this issue is not dealt with correctly, the danger is ‘Somalisation’ and not partition – the collapse of the state and the emergence of warlords, militias and fighting groups.
“Everyone must face a bitter, difficult and scary truth: that this type of crisis – if not dealt with correctly day by day – can go on for a year, two years and more.” “I hope that it doesn’t go on for this period, and it might not if everyone inside and outside [Syria] does what he should.”
Since Somalian President Siad Barre was toppled in 1991, Somalia has been overrun by rival clans and warlords, and is unable deal with famine and disease that have led to the deaths of up to a million people