Somalian Government Declares All-Out War to Curb Terrorism on its Citizens
In a recent report released on Monday, October 24, the United Nations Security Council stated that the Somalian government had announced that it will act to safeguard the citizens of the country from the threat of terrorism.
The vast port city of Kismayu is the most recent victim of the Shebab’s current wave of violent attacks, which have also resulted in deaths in central Somalia and the country’s capital Mogadishu.
The most recent attack, which took place on Sunday, October 23rd, killed nine people and saw Jubaland state security officials shot with the three gunmen killed inside the Tawakal hotel.
Yusuf Hussein Osman, the security minister for Jubaland, reported nine fatalities and 47 injuries, including “children who were leaving a neighboring school at the time of the attack.”
He added that “The security forces ended the siege in good time.”
According to Yusuf, Four men were involved in the attack: one committed suicide before three armed men broke inside the hotel.
The attack was a combination of a car bomb explosion followed by gunfire. A suicide bomber reportedly drove the vehicle through the front of the building before the other militants opened fire inside the hotel.
In light of the attack, the Shebab had openly claimed responsibility for the attack, stating they were targeting hotels where members of the Jubaland administration were gathered. Similarly in July 2019, they attacked local authorities at a hotel in the city, killing at least 26 people and injuring 56 others.
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Since 2007, the al-Qaeda-affiliated Islamist organization has been fighting against the internationally supported federal government. It has been ejected from major cities including the nation’s capital Mogadishu in 2011, but it has managed to firmly establish itself in rural areas, especially in the south of the country.
The Shebab militant group has increased its activity in Somalia, an impoverished and unstable nation in the Horn of Africa. In late August, they launched a 30-hour attack on a hotel in the capital Mogadishu.
This attack, which left at least 21 people dead and 117 injured, perplexed President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud, who declared an “all-out war” to eliminate the Shebab. He also urged the populace to “stay away” from places under the control of the Islamists because those areas would be the focus of the next offensives.
Military operations by the security forces and local clan militias in the country’s center have reportedly allowed them to gather intelligence on the Islamist fighters, according to the authorities
The US military is also conducting air strikes. In October, one of them assassinated Abdullahi Yare, a co-founder of the movement and one of its highest-ranking leaders, in the south of the country.
In addition to the Shebab’s constant attacks, Somalia faces a looming famine brought on by the worst drought in more than 40 years.
According to the UN, the drought affects 7.8 million people nationwide, or roughly half the population, and 213,000 are at significant risk of hunger. Without immediate action, famine might be declared before the year is over.