CIVIL-MILITARY FUSION CENTRE
Review July 24 2012
INSIDE THIS ISSUE In Focus North Africa Northeast Africa Horn of Africa Middle East
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This document provides an overview of developments in the Mediterranean Basin and other regions of interest from 10 July — 23 July, with hyperlinks to source material highlighted and underlined in the text. For more information on the topics below or other issues pertaining to the region, please contact the members of the Med Basin Team, or visit our website at www.cimicweb.org.
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In Focus: Somalia’s Transitional Federal Government By Britta Rinehard
The Transitional Federal Government (TFG) was formed in 2004 with a five-year mandate, recognised by the international community, to build a strong, centralised government in Mogadishu that would bring peace to Somalia, after 13 previous attempts since President Siad Barre was ousted in 1991. The mandate included the requirements to draft a new constitution and organise national elections in 2009, leading to a permanent, representative government. Due to security issues, the newlyformed TFG was unable to govern from Mogadishu and initially convened in Kenya until parliament’s first meeting in Baidoa, Somalia in February 2006. Following the removal of Islamists from the area by Ethiopian-supported government troops, Somali President Abdullahi Yusuf entered Mogadishu in January 2007 for the first time since taking office in 2004 and reclaimed the capital as the seat of his government. In an effort to bring stability to Somalia, particularly to the south-central region, the Djibouti Agreement was signed in August 2008 between the TFG and the Eritrea-based opposition Alliance for the Re-liberation of Somalia (ARS). In 2009, Sheikh Sharif Sheikh Ahmed was elected by parliament as the new Somali president. His goal was to bring peace and unity to his country. The Transitional Federal Parliament (TFP), which originally consisted of 275 members, was increased to 550 members in 2009 to include representatives from the opposition and civil society groups. The same year, the TFG’s mandate expired, but the TFP extended it for another two years until August 2011. Within that time frame, a constitution was to be drafted and general elections to be held; however, in early 2011 it became clear that the two goals would not be met. Ahmed has been criticised by the international community for not doing enough to “restore law, order (continued on page 10)
CIVIL-MILITARY FUSION CENTRE PRESENTS
North Africa Eray Basar › email@example.com Maya Moseley › firstname.lastname@example.org Algeria The Movement for Oneness and Jihad in West Africa (MUJAO) released three of the seven Algerian diplomats who were kidnapped from the Northern Mali town of Gao in April, according to Agence France-Presse (AFP). MUJAO had demanded the release of two Sahrawis arrested in Mauritania and $40 million for the release of the Algerian hostages. There has been no word if the ransom was paid. On 19 July, MUJAO released two Spaniards and an Italian who had been kidnapped in Algeria in October 2011 in exchange for the release of two Islamists, informs Reuters. Officials have not commented if a ransom was paid. However, AP reports that MUJAO claims to have received a ransom of USD 18.4 million in addition to the release of two of its members. In related news, the Arab Maghreb Union (UMA), comprising foreign ministers from Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Mauritania, and Libya, developed a cooperative security strategy for the region during two days of meetings in Algiers, according to Magharebia. Terrorism and organised crime were identified as regional threats. According to Tunisian Foreign Minister Rafik Abdessalem, the current crisis in Mali is a threat to the entire region. Algerian Foreign Minister Mourad Medelci also identified money laundering as problematic in its funding for terrorism in the region. Magharebia reports that, while supporting a political solution to the crisis in Mali, Algeria is preparing for a worst case scenario by increasing its border security with extra measures such as deploying three thousand soldiers, fighter aircraft and helicopters to reinforce the borders with Mali, Libya and Niger. In addition, ground transportation of imports and exports between countries has been suspended and anyone attempting to cross the borders must have Algerian authorisation. Moreover, Interior Minister Dahou Ould Kablia mentioned the possibility of a border closing with Mali. According to Business Intelligence, Algeria’s healthcare sector will receive USD 8.25 billion in order to modernise. With government support, 172 new hospitals, 45 specialised health centres and 377 clinics will be open by the end of 2014. In addition, Algerian President, HE Abdelaziz Bouteflika will inaugurate the Maghreb Health Summit in October 2012, which will convene attendees from ministries of Algeria, Morocco and Tunisia as well as the representatives from global pharmaceutical and medical sectors. The summit will highlight the importance of foreign direct investment and foreign expertise in the healthcare sectors of the region. Libya Reuters reports that the National Forces Alliance (NFA), a moderate coalition led by Mahmoud Jibril, beat Islamist opposition parties in Libya’s national assembly elections which were held on 07 July. The NFA gained 39 out of 80 seats reserved for parties. However, it remains unknown who will dominate the assembly as 120 seats were reserved for independent candidates with whom the parties will now seek to align themselves. Approximately 5,000 detainees remain in the custody of militias, who have missed the deadline to hand them over to the government, according to Human Rights Watch (HRW). Libyan Law 38 requires that “supporters of the former regime” held in detention by militias were to be transferred to the judicial authorities no later than 12 July. Detainees held by militias often face maltreatment and even torture. According to the Committee to Protect Journalists, Abdelqadir Fassouk and Yusuf Badi, two journalists for the Misrata-based TV station Tobcats were abducted while covering the 07 July elections near Bani Walid, reports Reuters. The detention of the journalists was spurred by rivalry between the cities of Bani Walid and Misrata, reports the Associated Press (AP). The town of Bani Walid, known for its support of Gaddafi, is willing to release the captured journalists in exchange for the release of some of its townsmen held captive by former rebels of Misrata, says the manager of Tobcats. The Salloum refugee camp in western Egypt continues to hold 2,000 refugees and third country nationals who fled Libya in 2011 and are unable to return to their countries of origin, states Integrated Regional Information Networks (IRIN). According to camp residents, insecurity persists as the camp faces threats from Libyans across the border. The UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) is expected to open a new camp closer to the Libyan border in August 2012 in order to provide increased sanitation; however, access to safe water will continue to be problematic. Many of those in the camp do not qualify for refugee resettlement but refuse to be repatriated to their countries of origin due to security concerns. Nationalities of those in the camps include, but are not limited to, Libyans, Chadians, Somali, Sudanese and Eritreans. Reuters reports that 54 people died while trying to cross the Mediterranean in a rubber inflatable boat. They launched from Libyan shores and spent 15 days at sea with no drinking water. The sole survivor of the group, half of whom were Eritrean nationals, was rescued by the Tunisian Coastguard in a state of advanced dehydration. Mali Various Islamist groups consolidated control of northern Mali after driving out the last bastion of the opposition force, the National Movement for the Liberation of Azawad (MNLA), on 12 July, informs AFP. Al Qaeda-linked Ansar Dine has strengthened its forces on the frontline, enlisting fighters from the Gandakoy militia in the town of Douentza, which is located on the divide between the 24 July 2012
Islamist-controlled northern region and government-controlled South, according to the AP. Magharebia reports that recruitment for Ansar Dine has decreased in response to the group’s strict implementation of Sharia in the Azawad region. In response to antiIslamist protests, the MUJAO, another Islamist group operating in the area, has relaxed its implementation of Sharia, but as the group is aligned with Ansar Dine and al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM) who seek to establish an Islamic state, it remains difficult to determine how MUJAO’s Islamist allies will respond to the new approach, reports AFP. On 21 July, six self-defence groups united to form the Patriotic Forces of Resistance (FPR) with the goal of expelling militant Islamists from the North, informs AFP. With the support of the African Union, the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) has continued to seek solutions to the “double crisis in Mali”, including the development of an inclusive unity government and seeking the approval from the UN Security Council to invoke Chapter VII, which would allow for the deployment of ECOWAS troops in Mali. The United States has urged the interim government of Mali to allow an ECOWAS force to assist in regaining control of the northern region from Islamists, informs Reuters. However, the International Crisis Group (ICG) warns against military intervention as it would likely perpetuate divisions within the country and open other West African nations to reprisal attacks by terrorists. Mauritania Mauritania continues to struggle with food insecurity, as the country produces less than 30% of its food needs and faces drought and increased cereal prices while hosting over 80,000 Malian refugees, according to IRIN. The Inter Press Service (IPS) reports that the government’s Emel programme, which provides food subsidies, fodder for livestock and vouchers for pastoralists, is seen as insufficient by the beneficiaries. Parliament member Moustapha Ould Bedredine stated that “the quantities distributed are insignificant and its management has been plagued by irregularities at all levels”. Nigeria Militant Islamist group Boko Haram has warned Christians to convert or they “will not know peace again”, reports Voice of America (VOA). On 10 July, the group claimed responsibility for the 08 July attacks in Plateau state which killed “scores of people”, including two prominent politicians. According to Reuters, some doubts remain over Boko Haram’s role in the attacks as security forces had been clashing with Fulani herdsmen who have been engaged in land conflicts with Christian agriculturalists in the region. Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan stated that the crisis in Plateau state was not the work of Boko Haram, reports This Day. According to the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), the violence in the state has displaced over 5,500 people. Insecurity has persisted in the northern region as well, as a suicide bomber targeted a mosque on 13 July in the city of Maiduguri, a stronghold of Boko Haram, killing five people, reports the BBC. While curfews were implemented in some areas, on 19 July, a day after curfews were lifted, six people were killed in Maiduguri and three others in the town of Kano, according to Reuters. Boko Haram is suspected to be responsible for the attacks. Tunisia According to Tunisia Live, Tunisia’s Reform Front, the country’s first Salafi political party, called for the implementation of Sharia in the country’s “political system” during its first conference on 08 July. Mohamed Khouja, head of the party, told AFP that “Sharia [should] be inscribed as the sole source of legislation” in the country. According to party spokesman Saleh Bouazizi, minority rights would still be guaranteed with the implementation of Sharia. With regard to the Reform Front, spokesman for the ruling Ennahda party said “it’s true we don’t agree with them, but we are willing to discuss this point [of Sharia] just like we are willing to talk about the same point with other secular parties who don’t want to include religion in political life.” The role of religion and politics in Tunisia continues to be debated. Reuters reports on 18 July that the Tunisian government has granted Islamist group Hizb al Tahrir a licence to become a political party. Hizb al Tahrir is an international Salafi movement that seeks to re-establish the Caliphate. The ruling Ennahda party has been criticised by secularists for being too soft on hard-line Islamists, but the Ennahda party seeks to avoid violent actions by fringe groups by bringing them into the political mainstream. Hizb al Tahrir is the second Salafi group to be granted a political license in Tunisia. However, Tunisia’s President Moncef Marzouki emphasised that Tunisia is governed by a coalition which includes two centre-left parties. A Tunisian court sentenced ousted President Zine al-Abidine Ben Ali to life in prison in absentia over the deaths of protesters during the revolution, according to Reuters. Ben Ali’s former Interior Minister Rafik Belhaj Kacem was sentenced to 15 years and the former Security Chief Ali Seriati was sentenced to 20 years in prison. Forty officials from Ben Ali’s regime have been sentenced to prison terms between five and 20 years.
Have a question on North Africa? Submit an RFI or recommend a topic for future In Focus coverage. Contact us at Mediterranean@cimicweb.org or visit us online at www.cimicweb.org. We look forward to hearing from you!
24 July 2012
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Northeast Africa Angelia Sanders › email@example.com Egypt In his first official state visit as president, Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi met with Saudi officials on 11 July to discuss Egyptians detained in Saudi prisons, Saudi investments in Egypt and employment opportunities in Saudi Arabia for skilled Egyptians, reports MENA. Morsi also met with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in Cairo on 18 July. The following day, Morsi met with Hamas political bureau head Khaled Meshaal to discuss Egypt’s efforts to support the Palestinian cause. In other presidential news, President Morsi pardoned 572 civilians who were being held in military prisons for their involvement in last year’s revolution. As of 23 July, 457 of the 572 prisoners have been released. On 19 July, the State Council Administrative Court ruled that it does not have the jurisdiction to consider legal challenges to the Supreme Council of the Armed Forces’ (SCAF) supplement to the Constitutional Declaration, reports Egypt Independent. SCAF’s supplement was implemented in June and granted the ruling military increased powers and diminished those of the presidency. The court also gave the same verdict on President Morsi’s decision to reinstate the People’s Assembly and referred the matter to the Supreme Constitutional Court (see 10 July 2012 “In Focus: Egypt’s New President”). Egypt Independent reports that scores of Egyptian and Syrian activists demonstrated before the Syrian Embassy in Cairo on 18 July and attempted to raise the flag of the Syrian revolution atop the embassy. Police forces used tear gas and fired warning shots into the air to disperse the crowd. Fourteen people were injured, including eight soldiers. Twenty people were arrested on charges of inciting the violence and were later released on bail. The Syrian Embassy in Cairo was stormed earlier in February 2012, following Egypt’s recall of its ambassador to Syria. In the violence, Syrian activists set fire to its ground floor. In other news related to protests, al Masry al Youm reports that members of the Muslim Brotherhood have been accused of attacking political activists and opposition figures during the week of the 12 of July. The Brotherhood and its political party have denied they were involved. At a government building in Suez, clashes erupted between police and workers from an industrial firm, reports Reuters. Over the last 18 months, many Egyptian workers have gone on strike demanding better wages and conditions. Israel said on 11 July that it was deploying a battery of Iron Dome rocket interceptors to the town of Eilat, near Israel’s borders with Egypt and Jordan, reports Reuters. Tensions have increased along Egypt’s border with Israel since Mubarak’s ousting in February 2011 and in June 2012 two rockets were fired into Eilat but did not cause casualties. Egypt denied the rockets were deployed from within Egypt. On 22 July, an explosion occurred on the pipeline carrying natural gas to Israel and Jordan. This is the 15 th attack on the pipeline since Mubarak was toppled in 2011 and no group has yet claimed responsibility. Officials at the Egyptian natural gas company have stated that there are no plans to repair the damages, reports al Masry al Youm. Former intelligence chief and vice president Omar Suleiman died on the morning of 19 July in a US hospital from an existing medical condition, reports Egypt Independent. Suleiman briefly served as vice president under Mubarak in February 2011. South Sudan The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) Humanitarian Bulletin on South Sudan reports that South Sudan is at the peak of its lean season, a period lasting from May to September when households are most likely to be food insecure because crops have been planted but not yet harvested. OCHA believes that high food prices, a reduced flow of commodities, and higher transport costs are likely to make this lean season more severe. Additionally, the rainy season has left many areas inaccessible for trade and there is likely to be an emergence of livestock diseases. In other humanitarian news, according to the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA), “more women die in child birth, per capita, in South Sudan, than in any country in the world”, reports Integrated Regional Information Networks (IRIN). An earlier report by the Small Arms Survey states “one in seven South Sudanese women will die in pregnancy or childbirth, often because of infections…with a lack of access to healthcare facilities playing a large role in their deaths”. Voice of America (VOA) reports that more than 90% of births occur without the help of a skilled birth attendant and according to the UN Population Fund (UNFPA), access to skilled attendants at birth can reduce maternal mortality rates by as much as 30%. Source: OCHA
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An audit report of South Sudan’s finances released on 16 July 2012 showed that unspecified billions of taxpayers’ money went unaccounted for in 2008 as a result of inflated payrolls and the awarding of dubious contracts to unregistered companies, reports the Sudan Tribune. The Auditor General has stated that the President and National Assembly must take further actions based on the finding of the report. South Sudanese marathon runner Guor Marial will run in the 2012 Olympic Games as an independent participant, reports the BBC. South Sudan does not yet have an Olympic body and Marial refused to run under the Sudanese flag given that he lost 28 relatives during the civil war between Sudan and South Sudan. Sudan The Sudanese government announced that production began at a new sugar plant on 11 July, reports Reuters. The opening of the USD one billion plant had been delayed several years as a result of US sanctions. The production of sugar has been a top priority for the government in order to diversify Sudan’s exports and to cut their reliance on imports. Reuters reports that official statistics showed that Sudan’s inflation rate increased to 37.2% in June 2012 compared to15% in June 2011. The rise reflects soaring prices for basic food items and transport following government austerity measures that scaled back fuel subsidies. According to a senior ruling party official, Sudan will not fully remove fuel subsidies until 2013 in order to minimise the financial pressure on society. Citing Sudanese activists, Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International reported that some 2,000 people have been detained since protests began in June 2012. The majority of detainees are held in National Security Services (NSS) detention centres which are “well known for the use of ill-treatment and torture”. According to al Jazeera, about 1,000 student protesters tried to force their way out of the University of Khartoum campus on 11 July but were pushed back by police using tear gas. The University has symbolic significance in Sudan’s history as it was the centre of popular uprisings in 1964 and 1985 that resulted in the overthrow of military rulers. Former Prime Minister and head of the opposition Umma National Party (UNP), Sadeq al Mahdi, has predicted that an Arab Spring-style uprising in Sudan would likely resemble the bloody conflicts seen in Syria and Libya, where the armed forces are used against the people, reports Reuters. Mahdi renewed his call for a peaceful change in the country that would come through a comprehensive and inclusive conference to debate the issues in the country rather than through conflict, reports the Sudan Tribune. The official Sudanese news agency SUNA reported that nearly 60 people died in fighting between Arab tribes in the Darfur region along the border between East Darfur and South Kordofan during the week of 19 July. According to Reuters, Sudan’s army clashed with members of the Darfuri Justice and Equality Movement (JEM) in South Kordofan state on 23 July. JEM has claimed that they seized and destroyed an army base and an ammunition depot. The recent attacks have cast a shadow over talks to allow aid into rebel-held areas and Sudan has accused South Sudan of supporting the rebels. Political and Humanitarian Issues along Sudan and South Sudan Border South Sudanese President Salva Kiir and Sudanese President Omar al Bashir met on 14 July in Addis Ababa to pursue negotiations to settle disputes over border demarcation and sharing of oil revenues, reports AFP. South Sudan’s chief negotiator Pagan Amum described it as a “good meeting”. Following the first successful rounds of negotiations, South Sudan cancelled planned face-to-face talks on 22 July after accusing Sudan of launching a new air raid on its territory the previous day, reports AFP. Sudan denied the bombings. A senior South Sudanese official stated on 23 July that South Sudan is offering Sudan complete debt forgiveness in the amount of USD 4.9 billion and a USD 3.2 billion compensation package to help with Sudan’s budget deficit, reports Reuters. The proposal also includes an improved offer of USD 9.1 and USD 7.26 per barrel in oil transit fees for Sudan’s two pipelines respectively. According to the Sudan Tribune, Sudanese negotiators termed the proposal as “nothing new” and rejected the offer. The UN Security Council has given the two countries until 02 August to resolve their issues. Failure to do so could result in the implementation of sanctions on the two countries. The European Union (EU) has reiterated “its strong support for the AU roadmap for Sudan and South Sudan and UN Security Council Resolution 2046 (2012) and urges the Parties to implement the Roadmap/UNSCR 2046 fully and unconditionally within the given timeframe”. OCHA reports that humanitarian organisations “remain concerned about deteriorating health conditions in refugee sites in Upper Nile and Unity states”, as witnessed by a spike in malaria cases and diarrhoea. At the Jamman site in Upper Nile, an estimated 10,000 people a week are being treated for dehydration. The Yida site reports that up to 2,500 a week are seeking medical assistance and the camp is receiving almost 800 new arrivals a day. Although the camps are located in South Sudan, inhabitants comprise those fleeing violence in Sudan’s Blue Nile and South Kordofan state.
Have a question on Northeast Africa? Submit an RFI or recommend a topic for future In Focus coverage. Contact us at Mediterranean@cimicweb.org or visit us online at www.cimicweb.org. We look forward to hearing from you!
24 July 2012
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Horn of Africa Britta Rinehard › firstname.lastname@example.org Djibouti Djiboutian officials acknowledge that, although the presence of international military bases in Djibouti might present a risk of retaliation from Islamist militants, national security forces are capable of minimising that risk, reports Reuters. Djibouti hosts France’s largest military base in Africa as well as a major base for the US’s Africa Command’s Combined Joint Task Force – Horn of Africa (CJTF-HOA). Djibouti is also contributing soldiers to the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) which is fighting al Shabaab militants who have vowed to revenge African nations participating in the force. Despite al Shabaab’s threats to attack African countries participating in AMISOM, Djibouti’s Economy and Finance Minister, Ilyas Moussa Dawaleh, has stated that he is more concerned about the country’s high unemployment rate and poverty among youth that may lead to extremist activity. Eritrea Reuters, obtained access to an unpublished report from the UN Monitoring Group on Somalia and Eritrea that asserts that evidence exists linking the Eritrean government to the deployment of Ethiopian rebel groups through Somalia, weapons sales with Sudanese smuggling rings who provide arms to Palestinian arms dealers, and imported spare parts for the Eritrean Air Force. These claims would violate UN Security Council resolutions, reports Reuters. The government in Asmara denies the allegations. The same report went on to state that the UN Monitoring Group was unable to detect any instances where Eritrea provided direct support to al Shabaab in Somalia. Ethiopia Human Rights Watch reports that the World Bank has approved a USD 684 million loan to fund a 1,000-km transmission line, providing Kenya with power from the controversial Gibe III dam. The dam is still under construction in Ethiopia and linked to environmental concerns and human rights abuses. The Ethiopian government has been accused of forcefully relocating indigenous people living in the area and ignoring the dam’s potentially damaging effects on the ecosystem. Various organisations are condemning the World Bank’s approval of the loan. Protesters in the capital blocked the entrance of the Anwar Mosque, claiming that the government is promoting the al Ahbash sect, a moderate branch of Islam, and interfering with their religion, reports Reuters. The government confirmed arrests were made inside the mosque but denied the use of teargas against protesters. According to a separate Reuters article, “any attempt to exploit sectarian divides has the potential to destabilise” a country where, based on a 2009 census, 60% are Christian and 30% are Muslim. Protests in the country of 84 million are rather uncommon but have increased in 2012 and may have resulted in some deaths, according to activists. Garowe Online states that about 500,000 to 1 million protesters have been demonstrating but the incidents have not received international attention due the state controlled media. On 11 July, the 45th session of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) Council of Ministers concluded in Addis Ababa. The council discussed the latest developments in Eritrea, Somalia and the peace process between South Sudan and Sudan. The 19th African Union Summit, Boosting Intra-African Trade, concluded on 16 July in the capital. Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma, Minister of Home Affairs of South Africa, was elected as the new Chairperson. Ethiopian Prime Minister Meles Zenawi did not attend the summit, sparking rumours about his possible critical health condition, reports Agence France-Presse (AFP). According to Ethiopian Communications Minister Bereket Simon, Zenawi’s “health condition is very good and stable” and he would return to work soon. Kenya According to the Wall Street Journal, the US Pentagon is seeking to send eight “Raven” unmanned drones to Kenya as part of a USD 41.4 million military aid package intended to help key African allies (Burundi, Djibouti and Uganda) in the region combat al Shabaab and other al Qaeda supporters. The package will also include trucks, communications gear and rifles. The drones will identify targets for ground and aerial strikes as part of operations against al Shabaab in Somalia. Kenya troops have experienced several grenade and bomb attacks within Kenya since crossing into Somalia to fight Islamist militants in October 201. Three Kenyan police officers were killed near the Somali border on 16 July and on 18 July; two grenades were thrown into a restaurant in the northeastern Kenyan town of Wajir, near the border of Somalia, killing five people. In other security related news, on 23 July, two Iranians went before the court on charges of possession of 15 kg of explosives, preparing to commit a felony and intent to commit grievous harm, reports Reuters. Both men are suspected of plotting to make bombs for attacks in Kenyan cities; however, both pleaded not guilty and were released on bail.
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Somalia The UN Monitoring Group on Somalia and Eritrea alleges that President Ahmed authorised a diplomatic passport to be given to pirate leader Mohamed Abdi Hassan “Afweyne”, enabling him to enjoy diplomatic immunity, reports Reuters. The report claimed that senior pirate leaders were benefiting from high level protection from Somali authorities and were not being targeted for arrest or sanctions. The report criticised authorities of the semi-autonomous region of Puntland for failing to arrest well-known senior pirate leaders while hundreds of low-level pirates had been arrested. The UN Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Somalia, Augustine P. Mahiga, condemned the murder of former trade minister and current Member of Parliament, Mohamed Abdinur Garweyne, and the wounding of at least six others in a car bomb attack in Mogadishu on 17 July. The attack was allegedly carried out by al Shabaab. In related news, according to Reuters, al Shabaab militants stated that they had executed three of their own members on 22 July for treason. The group believes that two of the men were CIA spies who assisted the US government in guiding missiles launched from a drone to kill fellow militants in January and February 2012. The third man was accused of spying for the United Kingdom. According to BBC, Somali government soldiers and African Union troops seized a major al Shabaab training base on 11 July in an area 40 km west of Mogadishu. The training camp is one of an estimated six camps across the country. Al Jazeera reports that al Shabaab has lost strategic ground in recent months but there is concern that fighters are being driven underground and could perhaps extend the conflict into a long drawn-out guerrilla war. On 16 July, the Council of the European Union (EU) approved a new two-year civilian mission, EUCAP Nestor,to be headquartered in Djibouti. According to the press release, a budget of EUR 22.8 million was allocated to accomplish the two main objectives of the mission which include “strengthening the sea-going maritime capacities in the countries in the region (with the exception of Somalia) and, in Somalia, the training of a coastal police force as well as of judges”. Djibouti, Kenya, Seychelles and Somalia have accepted the offer of assistance and a team of approximately 175 people will support the mission. According to UNHCR, the number of Somalis who have fled Somalia has surpassed one million, making Somalia one of the “world’s worst and longest running refugee and humanitarian crises”. Somalis are fleeing their homeland as a result of fighting, persistent drought and food shortages. Most have settled in Ethiopia, Kenya and Yemen. BBC reports that eight organisations, including Oxfam and Save the Children, are reporting a possible USD 25 million shortfall in funds for provision of services to the Dadaab refugee camp population in Kenya. The camp’s population has increased by almost a third over the last year and now houses almost half a million people, most from Somalia. Aid agencies report that 30,000 new shelters are needed in addition to the provision of water supplies and sanitation for 50,000 refugees. On 13 July, International Aid Services (IAS), a development and relief organisation, reports that three of its workers were kidnapped in Puntland by Somali pirates. According to Somalia Report, the hostages have been transferred to a location in the southern part of the Mudug region and OceanusLive reports the ransom demand for the release of the IAS workers is USD 1.5 million. Piracy On 12 July, the Contact Group for Piracy off the Coast of Somalia (CGPCS) Working Group 1, the Asian Shipowners’ Forum (ASF) offered a proposal “calling for the United Nations-sanctioned armed personnel to guard ships transiting high-risk areas in the Gulf of Aden and Indian Ocean”, reports Lloyd’s List. A recently-published UN report was less favourable on the use of private maritime security companies (PMSCs) and called on the UN Security Council to establish an authority tasked to regulate and monitor PMSCs’ activities, informs Shiptalk. The outcome of the latest meeting of the Maritime Safety Committee (MSC90) was to obtain ISO standardisation of the privately contracted armed security personnel (PCASP)/PMSC business; this effort is expected to be completed this autumn. Furthermore, the International Maritime OrOrganisation Number of Hostages Vessels Held ganization (IMO) has promulgated several circulars regarding this 185 7 issue: 1443, 1405, 1406 and 1408. Pursuant to MSC circular 1405, NATO/EU the German government approved a draft bill regulating the use of NAVFOR 174 11 armed guards deployed on German-flagged vessels, reports Inter- IMB1 Somalia Report 229 15 Manager. The correlation of new regulations to ISO certification is yet to be seen. Source: Allied Maritime Command HQ Northwood Lloyd’s List reports that from January to June 2012, 69 Somali piracy incidents and 13 hijackings were registered by the International Maritime Bureau (IMB) Piracy Reporting Centre. During the same time period in 2011, there were 163 incidents and 21 hijackings. The table below shows the number of hostages and vessels currently held by pirates, as of 16 July, according to three different organisations. At least another 47 hostages are being held on land. 1 Due to different definitions the figures can vary from entity to entity. While both NATO and EU only count vessels hijacked for ransom in their statistics, IMB also includes fishing vessels and dhows hijacked for other reasons than ransom. When it comes to the number of hostages, figures can vary due to different information regarding how many persons originally were on board the captured ships.
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24 July 2012
CIVIL-MILITARY FUSION CENTRE PRESENTS
Middle East Linda Lavender › email@example.com IRAQ Governance The increased unrest in Syria prompted Iraqi officials to evacuate 750 Iraqi nationals from Damascus, according to Associated Press (AP). Iraq’s central government had successfully completed eight flights so far. While thousands more Iraqis also “poured through a major border crossing to Iraq”. Approximately fifty busloads, totalling 3,000 people, have also entered Iraq at Al Walid, the largest border crossing between the countries over the course of a day. In western Anbar province, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) has erected tents and is providing medical assistance to those crossing the border. On 20 July, al Qaeda in Iraq (AQI) announced that a new offensive called “Breaking Down Walls” would soon begin in Iraq, according to the New York Times. The new offensive is part of a campaign launched by Sunnis against the country’s Shi’ite leaders. US President Barack Obama indicated he shared the Iraqi central government’s concerns over Exxon Mobil’s oil deal with the semiautonomous region of Kurdistan, stating that the US government respects the Iraqi constitution and laws, reports Reuters. Obama’s comments came as Chevron Corporation confirmed the direct purchase of 80% of two oil blocks in Kurdistan – a move that will likely infuriate the central government which maintains that all oil agreements must be signed by Baghdad. Chevron’s purchase underscores the power struggle between the Kurdish region and the central government, according to al Ahram. The dispute has many concerned of a potential Iraqi break-up and was further aggravated when, earlier this month, Kurds began exporting oil directly to Turkey; bypassing Baghdad. Kurdistan has also recently signed an agreement with Turkey to construct a new pipeline to Turkey’s refineries. Kurdistan’s President Massoud Barzani was accused by opponents of nepotism as he named his son head of the region’s new national security council, according to AFP. In addition, Barzani conferred a cabinet rank to a younger son and Barzani’s nephew, Nechirvan Barzani, is already the region’s prime minister. Shahu Said, a Kurdish Member of Parliament from the opposition group Goran said that “Massud Barzani is preparing to establish a dictatorial regime of the same type that recently fell in our region”. Security Iraqi insurgents launched at least 37 separate attacks across the country making 23 July, the third day of Ramadan, the single bloodiest day in 2012, according to United Press International (UPI). The coordinated attacks included setting off car bombs, storming military bases and ambushing checkpoints, and resulted in the deaths of at least 100 people and the wounding of 300 others. Earlier in the month, a bus bombing in Sadr City Baghdad, on 10 July, killed three and wounded 134 Iraqis, according to Reuters. Also, two soldiers were killed in Nineveh province during a noon attack in Mosul on 16 July, reports AP. AP reports that the Islamic State of Iraq (ISI), an Iraqi militant group linked to al Qaeda, claimed responsibility for 40 attacks in June 2012. ISI said it carried out a “constant drumbeat” of roadside bombs, car bombings and shootings against Shi’ite pilgrims and security forces. Iraqi officials report that 234 people were killed throughout June in attacks that came as frequently as every three days. Humanitarian On 19 July, the United Nations (UN) warned that the Iraqi central government’s patience with the residents of Camp Ashraf was “wearing thin”, reports Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty Source: ESRI (RFE/RL). The People’s Mujahedeen of Iran (MEK), exiled opponents of Iran’s regime, refused to leave the camp by the deadline of 20 July. UN Special Representative for Iraq Martin Kobler reported to the UN Security Council that approximately 1,200 members of the MEK remained in Camp Ashraf while disregarding an agreement to relocate. Almost 2,000 of the camp residents have already been moved to a new camp near Baghdad. In other comments, Kobler stated the UN mission in Iraq had much more to accomplish in order to improve the political, economic and social situation in Iraq. SYRIA Governance The United Nations approved a resolution on 20 July to extend the 300-person UN observer force in Syria for another 30 days, according to Associated Press (AP). However, a resolution calling for sanctions against President Assad was vetoed for the third time 24 July 2012
by Russia and China, according to Agence France-Presse (AFP). US ambassador to the UN Susan Rice called the veto “dangerous and deplorable and vowed the United States would seek partners outside the Security Council to place pressure on the Assad regime and provide assistance to those in need within the country. A US official on 18 July described Syria as a Middle Eastern “version of the Wild West”, with Assad’s forces losing control of many regions of the country, reports Investor’s Business Daily. Assad’ forces are unable to hold regions that they clear of rebel forces. Security The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reports that July could be the deadliest month of the conflict with more than 2,750 people killed in the first three weeks, according to the Guardian. The organisation reports that 19,000 people in total have been killed since the start of the unrest in March 2011. The fight for the capital of Damascus began on 17 July in what Russia called a “decisive battle”, reports Reuters. The Free Syrian Army (FSA) stated they had a clear plan to gain control of the city and one rebel told reporters to “expect surprises”, according to AFP. Helicopters were deployed for the first time over Damascus, shooting into anti-regime neighbourhoods. On 18 July, a bombing that targeted the National Security building in Damascus killed the Defence Minister Daoud Rajha , Deputy Defence Minister Assef Shawkat, brother-in-law of President Bashar al-Assad, and Syrian General Hassan Turkmani, reports Voice of America (VOA). Two rebel groups have claimed responsibility for the bombing, according to Reuters. Liwa al Islam, a small rebel militia, and FSA each claimed responsibility for the attack. On 20 July, Reuters reported a fourth casualty, Assad’s intelligence head Hisham Bakhtiar. On 22 July, Reuters reported that Assad forces appeared to be making gains on territory taken by rebels earlier in the week in Damascus. Meanwhile, an assault led by the FSA was underway to liberate Syria’s largest city, Aleppo. The Syrian rebels battling for the city indicated they had successfully seized some of the country’s border crossings with Iraq and Turkey, according to Bloomberg. Al Jazeera reports that rebels were in control of the Abu Kamal border crossing near the Iraqi town of al Qaim, while al Bawaba reports Syrian forces continue to control border crossings to Jordan and Lebanon. As the future of the Assad government remains uncertain, US officials are concerned that the recent relocation of chemical stockpiles might signal Syria’s intent to use weapons against rebels or civilians, reports the Daily Mail. The international community has warned they will “hold accountable any Syrian officials” who fail to safeguard Syria’s chemical weapons stockpiles. Meanwhile, on 23 July, Syria acknowledged for the first time that it has biological and chemical weapons and would deploy them if there was foreign interference in the conflict, reports Reuters. On 22 July, AP reported that Israel is concerned Syria’s chemical stocks could be seized by Lebanese militants or al Qaeda-affiliated militants. Responding to international concern, the FSA is forming a special unit of men trained to secure chemical weapon sites, reports the Telegraph. Signalling Assad’s weakened position, Syrian forces were pulled from the Golan Heights, a strategic location along the SyrianIsraeli border on 17 July, according to Arutz Sheva, an Israeli news source. Meanwhile, Lebanese news source the Daily Star reported on 15 July that Syrian soldiers briefly crossed the border into Lebanon to pursue an unidentified armed group before retreating across the border. Humanitarian Integrated Regional Information Network (IRIN) reports that fighting in Damascus has accelerated the growing problem of displaced populations in Syria. The Syrian Arab Red Crescent (SARC) opened 18 shelters in safer parts of Damascus and its surroundings. SARC estimates that 1.5 million people have been displaced by the Syrian uprising. Reuters reported on 20 July that over a 48hour period as many as 30,000 Syrians crossed the border into Lebanon. On 23 July, the European Commission announced it would be doubling its aid to Syrian refugees. Meanwhile, Syria continues to refuse visas for Western aid workers, hampering humanitarian efforts in the conflict-torn country, reports Reuters. Unconfirmed reports suggest that the Assad regime paid its loyalist-militia members, Shabiha, a USD 150 bonus for each person a member killed or raped in addition to a monthly stipend of USD 450 per month, according to Asharq al Awsat.
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24 July 2012
(continued from page 1) and basic services”. The President argues that he focused on fighting terrorism and, with the help of African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) troops, al Shabaab was pushed out of the capital and other former al Shabaab strongholds. Security in those areas has improved. About 63,000 Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs) have been able to return to their homes in Mogadishu alone. AMISOM, alongside TFG forces, continues to fight the Islamist militants; the government remains committed to drive the Islamic militants out and establish law and order in the country. There have been several reports accusing the TFG of corruption; the most recent accusations were leaked from a report by the UN Monitoring Group on Somalia and Eritrea, writes BBC. According to the report, out of every USD 10 received by the TFG between 2009 and 2010, USD 7 “never made it into state coffers”. The government denies the allegations. On 18 July, during a ceremony in Mogadishu, Somali president Sharif Sheikh Ahmed accused the UN Monitoring Group of being against peace and claimed that “the government is ready for transparency. If any money is missing, I am ready to resign”. In June, Ahmed announced that he will be available for the re-bid of his seat. Somalia Report has started to feature presidential candidates on their website. The Somalia Roadmap The Kampala Accord was signed on 9 June 2011 by the Somali president and speaker of the TFP. Among other things, it extended the current government until August 2012, called for the appointment of a new prime minister and stated that “both Government and Parliament shall work together with the international community to establish a roadmap with benchmarks, timelines and compliance mechanisms for the implementation of the priority task. Details of the mechanisms to be agreed by 20 August 2011”. On 11 July 2011, parliament approved the ten articles of the Kampala Accord with 393 Members of Parliament endorsing the agreement. A consultative meeting was held in Mogadishu on 4-6 September 2011 to discuss the accord. Attendees included Somali government officials and about 30 representatives from the international community. The meeting established a roadmap that will end the transitional period for the Somali government. The mandate of the TFG will expire on 20 August 2012, by which time Somalia must complete four main tasks in the areas of security, ratifying a constitution, reconciliation and good governance. In December 2011, the first Somali National Consultative Constitutional Conference was held in Garowe, the capital of the semiautonomous region of Puntland, with TFG officials, representatives from the semi-autonomous region of Puntland and a faction of the paramilitary group Ahlu Sunna wal Jamaah (ASWJ) participating. The conference resulted in the adoption of the Garowe Principles, based on previous agreements from the Somali National Peace Conference in Djibouti in 2000, and incorporation of the ‘4.5 formula’. The 4.5 clan representation formula calls for equal quotas for the major clans – the Darood, Digil-Mirifle, Dir and Hawiye – each receiving 61 seats, while the remaining groups receive 31 seats. The formula will be used for the new parliament in 2012. The Garowe Principles also seek a reduction in parliament from 550 seats to 225 seats, with an increase of women’s participation from the current 7% to 20%. Based on the 4.5 formula and the Garowe Principles, the National Constituent Assembly (NCA) will comprise 1,000 delegates, including 300 women, which will be selected from scholars, diaspora, religious and traditional leaders, among others. The NCA was scheduled to meet in May 2012 to vote on the new Federal Constitution. Garowe Online states that the NCA comprises 825 members rather than 1,000 as the Garowe II conference summary had indicated. On 25 July, The NCA started its meetings to discuss the provisional constitution. The second Somali National Consultative Constitutional Conference took place from 15-17 February 2012 in Garowe and established the Garowe II Principles which “shall guide and direct finalization of the draft constitution and the process of ending the transition including the development and enactment of the legal framework therein”. The draft constitution was to be completed by 20 April 2012. On 22 June, the signatories of the roadmap signed the Joint Communiqué of the Consultative Meeting of the Signatories of the Process for Ending the Transition and agreed on a draft constitution. On 18 July, Garowe Online reports that the traditional elders reviewed and approved the provisional constitution. The elders are also tasked to dissolve the current parliament and elect the new one, which will than elect the new president. The president will be tasked to nominate the new prime minister who will be subject to the approval of the parliament. UN Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Somalia, Augustine P. Mahiga, said, “Hopefully, on the eve of August 20, this new Cabinet will be sworn in and this will signify the end of the transition and the beginning of a new dispensation with a completely different road map, a different mandate”. Some Somalia experts are concerned that the TFG will not be able to make the deadline by 20 August “unless Somalia’s governing authority shows some commitment to the task”. Mahiga stated that the roadmap is challenging for various reasons, most notably bringing relevant players to the same table despite limited resources and security concerns. There will also be fundamental changes “not only in the mindset, but in the leadership and in the institutions. In 21 years, many have developed vested interests from a political perspective, including various clans, the business community and various ideological groups. Some of these interest groups are not keen to see change”. Somalia will be on its way to peace and stability, but this will be the beginning and not the end state. Britta Rinehard is the CFC Desk Officer for HOA, holds a Masters in International Studies and has more than ten years of experience in the transportation sector.
ENGAGE WITH US 24 July 2012
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