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HORN OF AFRICA: IRIN-HOA Weekly Round-up 396 for 18 - 24 August 2007

NAIROBI, 24 August 2007 (IRIN) - CONTENTS:

ETHIOPIA: Millennium celebrations to target malaria control
SOMALIA: Displaced people branded "terrorists" by Mogadishu mayor
SOMALIA: Imprisoned political leaders to be released as elections approach
SOMALIA: Thousands flee central region after clash violence
SOMALIA: Mogadishu violence hurting health care delivery, says charity
SUDAN: IDPs lead protest over police raid on fragile camp





ETHIOPIA: Millennium celebrations to target malaria control

Ethiopia will distribute 20 million free treated mosquito bed nets as part of campaign that will culminate with the country's Millennium celebrations in September. The country, which follows the Julian calendar, will celebrate its year 2000 from September 12, with activities that include a nationwide campaign on the use of the anti-malaria drug, Coartem.

To boost the campaign, the Japanese government donated US $1 million on 20 August to the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) for malaria prevention. Kinichi Komano, Japanese Ambassador to Ethiopia, said: "Young children and pregnant women are most at risk from the severe effect of malaria, including death. Thus we believe that the fight against infectious diseases is the main agenda of the time."

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SOMALIA: Displaced people branded "terrorists" by Mogadishu mayor

Allegations that humanitarian operations fuel insurgency in the Somali capital Mogadishu by the city's mayor have been slammed as "irresponsible" by a minister in the fragile transitional government as analysts expressed concern. Mayor Mohamed Umar Habeb (better known as Mohamed Dheere) told the local media on 20 August that the international community was feeding what he termed as “terrorists” and warned that they would have to deal with the consequences.

Minister of Justice Hassan Dhimbil Warsame told IRIN: "To say not to give food to the [displaced] people, most of them women and children, in these camps and call them terrorists is irresponsible. He is not fit to be the mayor of Mogadishu." Warsame also said that he had raised the issue in parliament in the town of Baidoa, to be discussed "as a matter of serious concern".

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SOMALIA: Imprisoned political leaders to be released as elections approach

President Dahir Rayale Kahin of the self-declared republic of Somaliland has agreed to release three leaders of the Qaran organisation who were jailed for setting up a political party unsanctioned by the authorities, officials said.

Ahmed Mohammed Silanyo, chairman of Somaliland’s main authorised opposition group, told IRIN the decision was made after an all-day meeting with a mediation team of religious leaders, human rights activists and local politicians.

Full report




SOMALIA: Thousands flee central region after clash violence

Hundreds of families have fled the Hiiraan and Galgadud regions of central Somalia after clashes between two communities claimed more than 30 lives, sources said. Moalim Mahmamud Hassan, the Eil Buur district commissioner who returned from the area on 20 August, said another 50 people had been wounded during the interclan fighting.

The clashes began on 18 August between the Murusade and Hawaadle subclans of the main Hawiye clan, and were concentrated in and around the town of Goob, 310 km north of the Somali capital Mogadishu, and Wabho and the surrounding villages, 30 km to the north, he said.

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SOMALIA: Mogadishu violence hurting health care delivery, says charity

Access to medical care for civilians and displaced persons in and around the Somali capital of Mogadishu has decreased alarmingly in the past months, according to the international medical charity Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF).

"With bombings and shootings nearly daily, people in need of medical care are terrified to leave their homes, medical personnel are fleeing the city, and hospitals are closed or barely functioning," said Christophe Fournier, MSF International Council President, at a press conference on 20 August in the Kenyan capital, Nairobi.

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SUDAN: IDPs lead protest over police raid on fragile camp

Internally displaced persons (IDPs) staged a demonstration on 22 August after Sudanese forces raided one of Darfur’s largest camps to arrest suspects believed to be behind a series of attacks on police stations. “We will continue the demonstrations until United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon comes,” IDP spokesman Abu Sharad told IRIN from Kalma camp in South Darfur.

He said 2,800 police, army and border intelligence officers surrounded the camp, which hosts an estimated 90,000 people. “They arrested 30 IDPs, burnt down 12 shelters and looted 175 others,” he added.

Full report



Theme(s): (IRIN) Conflict, (IRIN) Governance, (IRIN) Refugees/IDPs

[ENDS]

[This report does not necessarily reflect the views of the United Nations]
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