Somalia: police fire on food riot

Somali police fired on a crowd of people trying to storm a food warehouse in Mogadishu June 25, killing five civilians, witnesses reported. Hundreds of people had gathered at a police station that was serving as a food distribution center, said Halima Mudey, who was in the crowd. “People were waiting for the distribution of the food, but some of them tried to storm and steal the maize and cooking oil, then police opened fire and killed five people including my brother,” Abdiqadir Mohamed Ilbir said as he wept. He said his brother was shot and killed by the police. Mudey also said five people were killed. (AP, June 25)

See our last post on Somalia.

  1. Hidden violence in Somalia
    Reports via BBC Monitoring:

    On June 24, two civilians were shot dead by unknown assailants armed with pistols at a stall where the psychoactive leaf qat was being sold in Mogadishu’s Bakaaraha Market. Earlier that day on nearby Hawlwadaag Road, an explosion wounded four people. (Shabeelle Media Network, June 24)

    An explosion targeting Ethiopian troops occurred at Halgan village in Hiiraan Region June 23. The Ethiopian troops responded by arresting several local residents, while many others fled the village in fear. (Radio HornAfrik, June 23)

    Mortar shells rocked several Ethiopian and government forces bases in Mogadishu the night of June 22. (, June 22) At least six soldiers were killed and several others wounded that day when rival Somali government forces clashed near the southern port town of Kismayo. The soldiers were said to be members of opposing sub-clans. (, June 22) Col. Abdullahi Shaykh Isma’il Fartaag, the leader of one of the rival factions in Kismaayo, accused forces led by Col Afgaduud from Puntland of attacking Kismaayo and having links to al-Qaeda. (Shabeelle Media Network, June 23)

    Shaykh Hasan Dahir Aways, leader of the routed Islamic Courts Union, interviewed by AlJazeera, pledged that his forces will attack any foreign troops in Somalia, whether Ethiopian forces or Ugandan troops operating under AU authorization. “It makes no difference to us whether they are Ugandans or Ethiopians,” he said. “We will continue fighting with them as long as the foreign forces are on Somalia soil.” (Shabeelle Media Network, June 23)

  2. Plague of locusts
    Swarms of locusts have appeared in northern Somalia, blotting out the sky and destroying orchards. Millions of the insects descended three days ago in the autonomous northeastern province of Puntland, stripping bare hundreds of acres of mango, orange and pawpaw trees. (Reuters, June 26)