Παρασκευή, 21 Νοεμβρίου 2008

Fierce gun battle rocks Mogadishu

At least 15 people have been killed after insurgents attacked the Somali capital, Mogadishu, witnesses say. Heavily armed men were repulsed after they attacked the house of district commissioner Ahmed Da'i just after dawn prayers, resident Ahmed Mumin said. Mr D'ai confirmed the attack and said the bodies of the attackers "now littered the streets". The raid comes on the day Ethiopian troops are due to start leaving Somalia, under a recent peace deal. The BBC's Mohammed Olad Hassan in Mogadishu says there is no sign yet that the planned Ethiopian withdrawal from Mogadishu's residential areas has begun. The pull-out is due to finish on 29 December, according to the UN-brokered deal between the government and some moderate Islamist groups. The UN Security Council on Thursday unanimously passed a resolution imposing sanctions - assets freeze and travel ban - on anyone threatening peace in Somalia. "The prime goal of this is to provide a framework to stem the flow of arms into Somalia, which is causing such mayhem there," said John Sawers, the UN ambassador of the UK, which drafted the resolution. The resolution also mentions anyone disrupting aid deliveries.
Mosque killing
Meanwhile, a gunman has killed one clan elder and wounded three others in an attack inside a mosque near the northern town of Hargeisa. Hargeisa is the capital of the self-declared republic of Somaliland, which has been spared much of the violence of the rest of the country. After the Mogadishu attack, another resident Dahir Mohamed said he had seen the bodies of 15 young men. "They were unfamiliar faces in the our district, so we think they were the insurgents." The Islamists have not commented on the incident. Ethiopia sent troops into Somalia two years to help the transitional government oust Islamists from Mogadishu and surrounding areas. But President Abdullahi Yusuf last week admitted that Islamists now control most of the southern part of the country.

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Mόλις οι Ισλαμιστές πήραν το πάνω χέρι , ο ΟΗΕ επέβαλε εμπάργκο .. ( μήπως τελικά απλά πυροβολεί τα σαθρά έτσι και αλλιώς πόδια της όποιας απομείνασας αξιοπιστίας του ?
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Somali fighters opposed to the country's interim government have entered the port town of Haradheere in a search for the pirates who seized a Saudi Arabian-owned oil tanker, a local elder has said.Pirates have demanded a $25 million ransom for the Sirius Star, which was carrying more than two million barrels of oil when it was captured and is believed to be anchored off the coast of Somalia.The Haradheere elder told the Reuters news agency that the fighters wanted to know the whereabouts of the Sirius Star, which was captured on Saturday about 450 nautical miles off Kenya."The Islamists say they will attack the pirates for hijacking a Muslim ship," he told the Reuters news agency.Sheikh Abdirahim Isse Adow, an opposition spokesman, told the Reuters: "Saudi Arabia is a Muslim country and hijacking its ship is a bigger crime than other ships."The pirates are reported to be building up their defences around the vessel as the world's largest oil tanker company and other maritime officials said a more aggressive military approach is needed to stop such attacks."I think that's the only solution," Martin Jensen, the acting chief executive officer of Oslo-based Frontline Ltd, said on Friday.Some analysts have suggested that opposition fighters benefit from arms shipments and income gained through piracy. The groups have denied the allegations and point to the decrease in maritime attacks during the Islamic Court Union's brief control of large parts of the country in 2006.Piracy plagueAt least three other ships have been taken since the Sirius Star was captured last Saturday, and more than a dozen vessels with about 280 sailors on board are being held in Somali waters.More than 120 attacks have been reported off the coast of Somalia this year.

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