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Hundreds protest US airstrike on Somali town

Submitted by wararka on Tue, 03/04/2008 – 16:57.

Mogadishu-04.03.08- Hundreds of Somalis descended onto the streets of the remote border town of Dobley Tuesday protesting against a US airstrike that destroyed buildings and homes and killed at least six people, witnesses said. The US confirmed it launched a strike into southern Somalia overnight Sunday in its bid to flush out suspected members of al-Qaeda believed to be hiding in the region.

The protestors, mostly women and children, chanted anti-US slogans and demanded the US be held to account for the incursion.

“We are very sorry the superpower struck our town and killed our animals, especially our cows and bulls,” Habiibo Dahir, a mother of three, said.

Washington has been concerned that anarchic Somalia has become a safe haven and recruiting ground for al-Qaeda, and backed a successful Ethiopian effort in January 2007 to oust an Islamist group, known as the Union of Islamic Courts, which had seized power and isolated Somalia’s transitional government.

In the same month, US AC-130 gunships fired on suspected al-Qaeda agents in southern Somalia.

Dobley’s district commissioner Hagi Ali Dhere said the US “must pay compensation to the Dobley people because they destroyed many assets and lives in this town. It is not the first time they attacked our region.”

Somalia fell into lawlessness after the 1991 toppling of dictator Mohammed Siad Barre by US-backed warlords and the transitional government has been unable to assert full control over the Horn of Africa country.

It is believed remnants of the ousted Islamist group have been harbouring terrorist suspects linked to the 1998 bombings of the US embassies in Kenya and Tanzania.

Shabelle Media Network


About SG

Secretary general of Chama Cha Mwananchi. This blog www.chamachamwananchi.wordpress.com, is based in Sweden.


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