Somalia Situation Update: April 2023 | Counter-Insurgency Operation Gains Regional Support in Phase Two (2023)

Counter-Insurgency Operation Gains Regional Support in Phase Two as al-Shabaab Attacks and Political Differences Persist

President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud announced the second phase of the military offensive against al-Shabaab at the end of March.1Hiiraan Online, ‘Somali President launches second phase of anti-Al-Shabab operations,’ 28 March 2023The new phase reportedly aims to flush out al-Shabaab from the remaining parts of the country under its control, following the first phase that began in August 2022. While the operation initially focused on central Somalia, starting in Hirshabelle and then expanding to Galmudug state, the second phase aims to expand to southern regions – Southwest and Jubaland states.

In the first phase, the government sought support from clan militias from the Hawiye clan, and regained substantial territory from al-Shabaab. Subsequently, clan militias have played a vital role in the government-led operation. Since August 2022, these groups have been involved in more than 155 political violence events against al-Shabaab. Additionally, they have supported security forces in nearly 60% of events where government forces have regained territory from al-Shabaab. During the first phase of the offensive against al-Shabaab, Somali security forces regained control of over 215 locations previously under al-Shabaab’s control, mostly in Hirshabelle and Galmudug states. However, Somali security forces, who failed to fully drive out al-Shabaab militants from both states, still lack the military capacity to hold newly liberated areas. Al-Shabaab, in turn, took advantage of this weakness to maintain bases and launch complex attacks against government troops. In particular, they regained lost territories in Hirshabelle as the government expanded the offensive to Galmudug state.

As the federal government anticipates a lack of support from clans in the south for the second phase of operations,2International Crisis Group, ‘Sustaining Gains in Somalia’s Offensive against Al-Shabaab,’ 21 March 2023 it is seeking more support from neighboring states who are already present in Somalia under the African Union Transition Mission in Somalia (ATMIS) – possibly indicating a plan to scale down the role of clan militias in the operation.3Garowe Online, ‘Exclusive: Somalia to launch 2nd phase of offensive against Al-Shabaab,’ 26 March 2023 Djibouti, Ethiopia, and Kenya have reportedly promised over 30,000 soldiers to support the offensive in the coming months.4Hiiraan Online, ‘Somalia’s neighbours commit to send more than 30,000 additional troops to combat Al-Shabaab,’ 2 March 2023 This situation update analyzes the activities of al-Shabaab and the security forces during the second phase of the offensive and assesses the risk that political differences between the federal government and some of member states, like Jubaland and Puntland, may undermine the operations.

Al-Shabaab Aims for Hirshabelle While Continuing Attacks in Banadir

After the counter-insurgency operation against al-Shabaab expanded to Galmudug state in early 2023, Hirshabelle state became a vulnerable target for al-Shabaab attacks. These vulnerabilities have forced Somali security forces to stay focused on Middle Shabelle and Hiiraan regions in the second phase of the offensive rather than expanding to Jubaland and Southwest states. From 18 March to 14 April, ACLED records 19 political violence events involving al-Shabaab in Hirshabelle state, resulting in at least 145 reported fatalities (see map below). Over 68% of these incidents were remote violence events, which record an increase of 30% compared to the previous four weeks.

Somalia Situation Update: April 2023 | Counter-Insurgency Operation Gains Regional Support in Phase Two (1)

In Middle Shabelle region, al-Shabaab launched several attacks in Adan Yabaal district – in most instances using explosives. On 25 March, al-Shabaab detonated three under-vehicle IEDs (UVIED), targeting security forces and Abgal clan militias at a base in Run-nirgod village. The explosion and heavy gunfire exchange that followed resulted in over 50 reported fatalities. A few days earlier, on 20 March, another al-Shabaab attack at a base in Daarul-Naciim village reportedly killed at least 55 people from both sides. The attacks came before the visit of the Somali President on 26 March to Adan Yabaal town, where he announced the launch of the second phase of the offensive against al-Shabaab.5Somali Guardian, ‘Somalia’s president arrives in Adan Yabal town amid tight security,’ 26 March 2023; Hiiraan Online, ‘Somali President launches second phase of anti-Al-Shabab operations,’ 28 March 2023 The same day, a high-level Ethiopian delegation that included the head of the Ethiopian National Defense Force and senior government officials arrived in the capital of Hiiraan region, Belet Weyne town, to help Somali forces plan the next phase.6Hiiraan Online, ‘Ethiopian military delegation arrives in Somalia to prepare for joint offensive against Al-Shabaab,’ 26 March 2023 Ethiopian troops have been fighting Islamist militants in Somalia since 2006 independently,7Jeffrey Gettleman, ‘Ethiopia Hits Somali Targets, Declaring War,’ New York Times, 25 December 2006 and as part of the AU Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) since January 2014.8Mohammed Yusuf, ‘Ethiopian Troops Join AU Force in Somalia,’ Voice of America, 22 January 2014 AMISOM was eventually replaced by ATMIS in 2022.9The EastAfrican, ‘From Amisom to Atmis: Will new AU mission in Somalia succeed?,’ 1 April 2022

Meanwhile, security forces continued offensive operations in Hiiraan to avert al-Shabaab attacks. The government deployed troops from Mogadishu to the region, traveling along the main supply route that connects Mogadishu to Hiiraan.10Radio Risala, ‘Security forces capture village from al-Shabaab in Hiiraan,’ 25 March 2023 On 25 March, security forces captured Jibiley village in Jalalaqsi district and Quracley village in Bulo Burto district from al-Shabaab. While militants peacefully vacated those villages, they continued to launch attacks on security forces and clan militias’ new bases near Belet Weyne town. On 29 March, an al-Shabaab suicide vehicle-borne IED attack targeted security forces and Hawadle clan militias at a base in Baardheere village, followed by clashes.

Further, al-Shabaab continued measures to end the alliance between government forces and the Hawadle sub-clan in the second phase of the offensive. The Hawadle sub-clan of the Hawiye clan is the largest and most prominent sub-clan in Hiiraan. There are four main clans in Somalia: Hawiye, Darod, Dir, and Rahanweyn, with each having several sub-clans and those sub-divisions, some supporting al-Shabaab, and others supporting the government operation against al-Shabaab.11Reuters, ‘FACTBOX – Clan structure key to understanding Somalia,’ 5 December 2007 Since al-Shabaab controls several remote villages in Hiiraan and other regions, sub-clans consider it necessary to reach an agreement with al-Shabaab for their safety, and in return for their support or neutrality, al-Sahabab offers them peace deals.12Hiraal Institute, ‘Governance Without Presence: The Somali Government’s Liberation Struggles,’ April 2023 On 5 April, al-Shabaab claimed to have signed an agreement with Hawadle Galible Hassan Agoon sub-clan in Buqda Caqable village, Bulo Burto district. The agreement stipulates that the sub-clan would not be part of the ongoing offensive in Hiiraan region. Similar agreements were reportedly signed between al-Shabaab and at least seven other sub-divisions of the Hawadle sub-clan in Buqda Caqable village this year. Al-Shabaab also reached an agreement with clan elders from Habar Gedir Salebaan sub-clan in Xarardheere town, Mudug region, in December 2022.

Meanwhile, al-Shabaab continues its efforts to destabilize the government operation by launching attacks in urban towns. The capital Mogadishu records the highest number of al-Shabaab attacks compared to other urban areas in Somalia, with 49 political violence events and at least 21 reported fatalities. Al-Shabaab’s use of explosions and remote violence increased in the capital by over 87% during the reporting period compared to the same time period prior; the group’s use of grenades, in particular, increased more than four-fold (see graph below).

Somalia Situation Update: April 2023 | Counter-Insurgency Operation Gains Regional Support in Phase Two (2)

On 5 April, al-Shabaab carried out coordinated hand grenade attacks in all 17 districts of Mogadishu. The grenade attacks targeted security force checkpoints, the house of the mayor of Mogadishu and governor of Banadir, the house of former Prime Minister Hassan Ali Khaire, and the house of a federal senator. Further, the militants launched mortar shells targeting the presidential palace, with some striking the house of the petroleum minister, reportedly killing a security officer.

Political Differences Undermine the Offensive

As part of the second phase of the offensive, the federal government plans to expand the offensive to Jubaland and Southwest states in southern Somalia.13Goobjoog, ‘‘Final push’ against Al-Shabaab coming soon, Somali infantry commander says,’ 23 March 2023 Political differences due to power-sharing disputes in Jubaland and Puntland, however, undermine the operation.

Amid an ongoing dispute with the Jubaland administration based in Kismayo,14Crisis Group, ‘Ending the Dangerous Standoff in Southern Somalia,’ 14 July 2020 Gedo region politicians and government officials unilaterally announced the recruitment and mobilization of local clan militias to participate in the military operation against al-Shabaab in the region.15BBC Somali, ‘What are the forces being trained in Bardhere that caused controversy in Jubbaland?,’ 13 March 2023 On the other hand, Jubaland State Minister of Security Yusuf Hussein Dhuumal reportedly rejected such plans to involve local clan militias.16Garowe Online, ‘Somalia: Jubaland rejects use of clan militia in Al-Shabaab war,’ 21 March 2023 The most prominent sub-clan in Gedo region is the Marehan sub-clan of the Darod clan, which opposes Jubaland President Ahmed Mohamed Islam – also known as ‘Madobe’ – from the Ogaden sub-clan of the Darod clan. Marehan and Ogaden sub-clans have been fighting over the control of Kismayo since the 1990s.17Faisal Roble, ‘Clan Cleansing in Somalia: The Ruinous Legacy of 1991: A Book Review,’ 8 November 2013 The current dispute between Gedo politicians, who are mostly from the Marehan sub-clan, and the Madobe administration escalated in 2020 when a leadership dispute led to the federal government’s decision to deploy troops in the region.18Garowe Online, ‘Ethiopia mediates Gedo leadership conflict in Somalia,’ 23 November 2022 Jubaland administration fears that arming Marehan clan militias in Gedo would tip the balance of power in favor of the Marehan sub-clan. Nevertheless, Jubaland security forces continued conducting military operations against al-Shabaab despite the lack of support from local communities. Further, on 3 April, Ethiopian security forces deployed troops in Doolow town, Gedo region, as part of Ethiopia’s commitment to increase its military presence in Somalia during the second phase of the counter-insurgency operation.19Garowe Online, ‘Ethiopian troops cross over to Somalia in pursuit of al-Shabaab,’ 23 March 2023

Political differences between the Puntland administration and the federal government have also complicated plans for the counter-insurgency operation. In mid-March, the federal government and member states held a national consultative council meeting in Baidoa town to discuss the fight against al-Shabaab and to foster cooperation between the federal and member state governments.20Hiiraan Online, ‘Somali President opens National Consultative Council meeting in Baidoa,’ 16 March 2023 Puntland state president did not attend the meeting citing political differences with the federal government, including the appointment of the new special envoy for Somaliland affairs.21Garowe Online, ‘Somalia: Deni skips consultative meeting in Baidoa,’ 16 March 2023; Garowe Online, ‘Somalia: Puntland opposes of appointment of envoy of Somaliland affairs,’ 3 April 2023 On 9 January, Puntland state suspended cooperation with the federal government after skipping the signing of two outcomes of a national consultative council meeting held in Mogadishu in late December.22Garowe Online, ‘Somalia: Puntland suspends cooperation with central Government,’ 10 January 2023 Although al-Shabaab activity decreased in Puntland during the reporting period compared to the previous four weeks, fighting between al-Shabaab and IS militants led to the reported deaths of at least 40 al-Shabaab militants, including senior members. The fighting erupted after several al-Shabaab militants moved to the mountainous Bari region, likely fleeing from the government’s offensive.

Different administrations in Somalia have adopted distinct approaches to the fight against al-Shabaab, often deeply tied to the clan affiliations of Somali leaders. The previous government – in power from 2017 to 2022 – focused on foreign policy, rebuilding security forces, and leading reconciliation between clans.23Hassan A. Zaylai, ‘Farmajo: A Fantastic President of Somalia!,’ Hiiraan Online,’ 17 February 2022 Meanwhile, the current administration has enlisted support, first from clan militias and now from neighboring countries, in an intensive offensive to flush out al-Shabaab militants. President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud is from the Hawiye clan24Al Jazeera, ‘Somalia elects Hassan Sheikh Mohamud as new president,’ 15 May 2022 that has sub-clans supporting the government operation against al-Shabaab, including Hawadle and Abgal in Hirshabelle and Habar Gedir in Galmudug. Former President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed, also known as ‘Farmajo,’ who is from the Marehan sub-clan of the Darod clan,25Voice of America, ‘Somalia’s New Prime Minister Under Scrutiny,’ 19 October 2010 failed to get support from the Majerteen sub-clan in Puntland, and Ogaden sub-clan in Jubaland, with the latter intensifying the dispute between Gedo and Kismayo administration.

The progress made through the government operation has put Somalia in a more positive position compared to the last six years. These efforts could help the country recover the decades-long political and security instability, but only if effectively managed through power sharing, reconciliation, and integration of clan militias into security forces. Nonetheless, the greater role of forces from neighboring countries in the offensive might lead to a divide between clan militias and government forces, and claims of a ‘foreign invasion’ may be used by al-Shabaab in its propaganda in order to recruit fighters. Consequently, military support from Djibouti, Ethiopia, and Kenya might not be a solution but rather a setback in the fight against al-Shabaab. The regional countries are already present in Somalia under ATMIS, although they have not participated in the ongoing offensive due to funding issues and have only offered logistical support and medical evacuation.26Bitania Tadesse, Zekarias Beshah, Solomon Ayele Dersso, ‘Cash strapped African Union Transition Mission in Somalia (ATMIS) starts its second year facing uncertain financial future,’ 4 April 2023 The Abgal, Habar Gedir, and Hawadle clan militias have played an important role in the security forces’ success since August 2022, and scaling down their involvement will likely undermine the government’s efforts to defeat al-Shabaab. For the government to claim ownership of the offensive, integrating clan militias into security forces should be considered a priority.


What's happening in Somalia 2023? ›

VITAL TRENDS. ACLED records more than 180 political violence events and over 420 reported fatalities from 18 March to 14 April 2023. Most political violence centered in Banadir region, where al-Shabaab launched attacks targeting Somali security forces and civilians.

Is the Somali civil war still going? ›

The Somali Civil War (Somali: Dagaalkii Sokeeye ee Soomaaliya; Arabic: الحرب الأهلية الصومالية al-ḥarb al-'ahliyya aṣ-ṣūmāliyya) is an ongoing civil war that is taking place in Somalia. It grew out of resistance to the military junta which was led by Siad Barre during the 1980s.

How did Somalia become a failed state? ›

Somalia, a country in the horn of Africa has been considered a failed state due to its lack of a central government with the monopoly to exercise legitimate use of violence.

Who started the Somali civil war? ›

The armed conflict between Hizbul Islam and al-Shabaab began due to a dispute between the faction of the Ras Kamboni Brigades led by Sheikh Ahmed "Madoobe" and al-Shabaab, over a power sharing agreement in Kisimayo.

What is the humanitarian situation in Somalia 2023? ›

Over 6.3 million Somalis are expected to face high levels of food insecurity between January and March 2023 including 322,000 in catastrophic levels of food insecurity. The cumulative levels of excess mortality could be as high as in 2011 when almost 260,000 people lost their lives, at least half of them children.

What is the main problem in Somalia? ›

Somalia's entrenched patterns revolve around poor governance, inter-clan conflict, and marginalization. Al-Shabaab's resilience and entrenchment comes from its adroitness at taking advantage of corrupt governance and clan rivalries, exploiting clan disputes, and offering support to marginalized clans.

Are US troops fighting in Somalia? ›

President Biden may have ended the "forever war" in Afghanistan in 2021, but an American conflict still rages on in Somalia, one of the last bastions of the United States' decades-long war on terror.

What happened to US soldiers in Somalia? ›

Hundreds of Somali fighters filled the streets, and the U.S. soldiers became trapped. After 17 hours of continuous fighting, the surviving U.S. troops were finally rescued by an international force. The battle left 18 U.S soldiers dead and 84 wounded.

Did the US lose in Somalia? ›

Seven months after the deployment of U.S. troops to Somalia, on 5 June 1993, the U.N. suffered its worst loss of its peacekeepers in decades when the Pakistani contingent was attacked while inspecting an SNA weapons storage site.
Battle of Mogadishu (1993)
Date3–4 October 1993
ResultInconclusive, see Aftermath
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What is Somalia rich in? ›

Somalia has a large trade deficit. Its chief export commodities are livestock and bananas, which are mainly sent to Arab countries. Other exports include hides and skins, fish, and frankincense and myrrh.

Why is Somalia struggling? ›

Somalia faces catastrophic hunger, with the country devastated by the extreme drought in the Horn of Africa. A total of 6.5 million people face acute food insecurity amid the driest conditions in 40 years, following five consecutive failed rainy seasons.

Why is Somalia the most corrupted country in the world? ›

The never-ending conflict in the Horn of Africa country remains the leading cause of the runaway corruption, as terrorism, suppression of press freedom, political, social and economic instability, and suppressed freedom of speech have created fertile grounds for the vice to thrive.

What is the old name for Somalia? ›

Independence. 1950 - Italian Somaliland becomes a UN trust territory under Italian control. 1956 - Italian Somaliland renamed Somalia and granted internal autonomy. 1960 - British and Italian parts of Somalia become independent, merge and form the United Republic of Somalia; Aden Abdullah Osman Daar elected president.

Why is the US at war with Somalia? ›

Beginning in the late 2000s, the United States Military has supported the Federal Government of Somalia in counterterrorism as part of the ongoing Global War on Terror that began in wake of the September 11th attacks.

Who owned Somalia before? ›

Somalia was colonized by European powers in the 19th century. Britain and Italy established the colonies of British Somaliland and Italian Somaliland in 1884 and 1889, respectively. These two Somali lands eventually united and gained independence on July 1, 1960.

Who is helping Somali refugees? ›

The UN Country Team continues to support the Federal Government of Somalia in working towards the attainment of durable solutions for refugees, asylum-seekers, returnees and IDPs, working in close partnership with international and national actors.

What is the relationship between the US and Somalia? ›

The United States recognizes the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Somalia within its 1960 borders in accordance with the Somali provisional constitution, which includes Somaliland and Puntland.

Who controls Somalia? ›

The incumbent President of Somalia is Hassan Sheikh Mohamud. Hamza Abdi Barre is the national Prime Minister.

What are Somalis good at? ›

Nevertheless, there are certain values that are characteristic to Somalis, these being generosity, hospitality, kinship , respect for the elderly and honour. Broadly, Somalis have also demonstrated a high level of adaptability and entrepreneurialism in the face of adversity.

What is currently going on in Somalia? ›

Displacement and Access to Humanitarian Assistance

Over 2.6 million Somalis are internally displaced, increasingly because of conflict. The UN said over 570,000 people were displaced between January and August 2021.

Is there war in Somalia 2023? ›

Attachments. ACLED records over 634 political violence events and 2,207 reported fatalities from 1 January to 17 March 2023. Most of the violence centered in southern and central Somalia, where government security forces have been conducting a military operation against al-Shabaab since August 2022.

How many US troops are in Somalia now? ›

The U.S. has an estimated 450 military personnel in Somalia after President Joe Biden reversed his predecessor Donald Trump's decision to withdraw American forces. The U.S. supports Somali forces and a multinational African Union force with drone strikes, intelligence and training.

Is there a US Army base in Somalia? ›

Presently, Baledogle Airfield is primarily used by the United States, AMISOM and the Somali National Army as a base for conducting counterinsurgency and drone operations in the country.
Baledogle Airfield
Lower Shabelle, Somalia
Baledogle Airfield Location in Somalia
Coordinates2°40′20″N 44°47′5″E
TypeAir force base
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How many US troops died in Somalia? ›

The United States Army in Somalia, 1992–1994

Ultimately hundreds of thousands were saved from starvation, but unintended involvement in Somali civil strife cost the lives of thirty American soldiers, four marines, and eight Air Force personnel and created the impression of chaos and disaster.

Is the US Navy in Somalia? ›

US President Trump ordered the majority of US troops out of Somalia by early 2021. The United States military has deployed a group of navy ships off the coast of Somalia to support the withdrawal of some 700 personnel from the country, the Pentagon said on Tuesday.

Is it safe to go to Somalia? ›

Somalia - Level 4: Do Not Travel. Reissued with updates to security information. Do not travel to Somalia due to crime, terrorism, civil unrest, health issues, kidnapping, and piracy.

Who supplied weapons to Somalia? ›

United States Donates Weapons and Ammunition to Somalia's Fight against Terrorism - U.S. Embassy in Somalia.

Are US troops are withdrawn from Somalia? ›

Without providing details, the Pentagon said in a short statement that “a majority” of U.S. troops and assets in Somalia will be withdrawn in early 2021.

Is the United States helping Somalia? ›

In the decades since, the United States has become one of Somalia's largest international assistance donors and its largest provider of humanitarian aid.

Why did the US help Somalia? ›

President George H.W. Bush authorized the dispatch of U.S. troops to Somalia to assist with famine relief as part of the larger United Nations effort. The United Nations' United Task Force (UNITAF) operated under the authority of Chapter VII of the U.N. Charter.

Who is the millionaire in Somalia? ›

Abdirashid Duale (Somali: Cabdirashiid Siciid Ducale, Arabic: عبد الرشيد دعاله) is a multi-millionaire Somali entrepreneur. He is the CEO of Dahabshiil, an international funds transfer company.
Abdirashid Duale
Born1964 Burao, Somaliland
Known forCEO of Dahabshiil
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Is there a Somali billionaire? ›

Ismail Ibrahim Ahmed is the founder and chairman of the money-transfer business WorldRemit and the Sahan Foundation International director. Ahmed was born and raised in Hargeisa, Somaliland.

How do Somalis make a living? ›

Agriculture is the most important sector, with livestock normally accounting for about 40% of GDP and more than 50% of export earnings. Nomads and semi-pastoralists, who are dependent upon livestock for their livelihood, make up a large portion of the population.

Why are so many people leaving Somalia? ›

The Somali refugee crisis is one of the most challenging mass displacement situations in the world. Over the last 30 years, hundreds of thousands of people have fled Somalia due to political instability and a dangerous civil war that broke out in the 1990s.

What is Somalia known for? ›

Somalia is the easternmost country in Africa, in what's known as the Horn of Africa. It has endured a long and brutal history, with a neverending war, random attacks, and famine. Somalia's also become infamous for its pirates, who seized ships in the Gulf of Aden during the 2000s.

What are Somalis called? ›

`Somalian', also used as both a noun and an adjective, refers to the citizens of the Democratic Republic of Somalia. It should be noted that almost all Somalians are also ethnic Somalis.

Which country is number 1 in corruption? ›

Denmark, Finland, New Zealand, Norway, Singapore, and Sweden are perceived as the least corrupt nations in the world, ranking consistently high among international financial transparency, while the most apparently corrupt are Somalia (scoring 12), Syria and South Sudan (both scoring 13).

Why is Somalia the poorest country in Africa? ›

Looking At Poverty in Somalia. Following the aftermath of civil war and prolonged conflict, Somalia is now one of the most impoverished nations in the world. This is largely due to the collapse of the Somali Democratic Republic in 1991, an event that divided the country. War waged, killing thousands of native Somalis.

What is the religion of Somalia? ›

Other sources, including the Federal Government of Somalia, estimate the population to be at least 15.7 million. According to the Federal Ministry of Endowments and Religious Affairs, more than 99 percent of the population is Sunni Muslim.

What is Somali DNA? ›

and shows approximately 60% East African and 40% West Eurasian (25% West Asian and 15% North African) ancestry in the Somali population. The similarity of individuals is apparent, which presumably reflects very ancient admixture events and a unification process through endogamy.

What was Somalia called in biblical times? ›

Somalia was known to the ancient Egyptians as the Land of Punt. They valued its trees which produced the aromatic gum resins frankincense and myrrh. Punt is also mentioned in the Bible, and ancient Romans called it Cape Aromatica. Somalia is named for the legendary father of the Somali people, Samaal (or Samale).

Where did Somalis come from originally? ›

The Somali people are believed to have their origins in the North of Somalia. With the longest coastline on the continent, Somalia holds an important place in the history of global maritime trade with ancient Egypt, Rome, Persia, Greece, Phoenicia, China and other empires.

Are the US and Somalia allies? ›

Somaliland and the United States do not have official diplomatic relations. While Somaliland operates a representative liaison office in Washington, D.C., it does not have formal diplomatic status under the provisions of the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations.

Does Somalia have oil? ›

The presence of oil in Somaliland has been confirmed by a recent exploration. The discovery has raised the stakes in Somaliland's claim for independence from Somalia as it holds the potential for a new stream of revenue for the semi-autonomous state.

Why was the US in Somalia during Black Hawk Down? ›

The Battle of Mogadishu, also known as Black Hawk Down, was part of Operation Gothic Serpent. It was fought on October 3 and 4, 1993 in Mogadishu, Somalia, between United States troops as part of a larger United Nations peacekeeping mission, and Somali militiamen loyal to Somali General Mohamed Farrah Aidid.

What was the Somali before Islam? ›

Pre-Islamic period

The Somali people in pre-Islamic times are believed to have adhered to a complex belief System, with a set of deities superseded by a single all-powerful figure called Eebbe/Waaq (God, also known in Oromo as Waaq).

Did Italy own Somalia? ›

Italian Somaliland, Former Italian colony, eastern Africa. It extended south from Cape Asir to the boundary of Kenya, occupying an area of 178,218 sq mi (461,585 sq km). Italy obtained control of it in 1889 and it was incorporated as a state in Italian East Africa in 1936.

Who was the first Somali? ›

Samaale, the oldest common ancestor of several Somali clans, is generally regarded as the source of the ethnonym Somali. One other theory is that the name is held to be derived from the words soo and maal, which together mean "go and milk".

What is the future of Somalia? ›

Owing to the multiple crises, GDP contracted by 0.2% in 2020. GDP growth recovered to 2.9% in 2021 but is projected to have fallen to 1.7% in 2022 under the regional drought and worsening global economic conditions. GDP growth is forecast to rebound to 2.8% in 2023 and 3.7% in 2024.

What are Somalia going through? ›

Somalia drought: famine levels predicted in 2023

Crops can't grow here. The worst drought in 40 years, caused by climate change, has left the land bone dry. Livestock is dying, and 6.5 million people are struggling to access the food they need.

Is Somalia in a crisis? ›

Somalia faces catastrophic hunger, with the country devastated by the extreme drought in the Horn of Africa. A total of 6.5 million people face acute food insecurity amid the driest conditions in 40 years, following five consecutive failed rainy seasons.

Is the US involved in Somalia war? ›

Two U.S. special operations personnel, 2 contractors, 1 US Army soldier and a CIA paramilitary officer have died during operations in Somalia. MQ-9 Reaper drone, commonly used over Somalia by U.S. forces.
American military intervention in Somalia (2007–present)
DateJanuary 7, 2007 – ongoing
StatusLimited operations as of 2021
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Is the US pulling out of Somalia? ›

US officials say President Biden has approved the redeployment of US troops in Somalia, reversing a decision by his predecessor Donald Trump. The deployment was requested by the Pentagon to support the fight against militant group al-Shabab. President Trump withdrew about 700 US troops from Somalia in 2020.

Why are Americans fighting in Somalia? ›

American troops are mainly in the country to fight the terrorist group al-Shabaab, which bases itself in Somalia and other portions of East Africa. While the combat in Somalia is not often talked about, there has actually been an on-and-off American presence in the country since at least 2007, as part of a post-Sept.

Did the US fail in Somalia? ›

Although the mission was technically successful—several high-ranking Aydid associates were apprehended—it was widely perceived as a failure because of its high cost in human lives. Soon after the incident at Mogadishu, Clinton withdrew all U.S. troops from Somalia.

What does Somalia need help with? ›

There are many causes, climate change and drought as well as ongoing armed conflict. Across the Horn of Africa, 24 million people are extremely food-insecure. And, in Somalia, humanitarian agencies warn, nearly eight million people, half of the population, is still in dire need of humanitarian assistance.


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