Response to the Amnesty International Regional Director for East and Southern Africa

Mogadishu, 26 November 2022

1. Somalia condemns Human Rights violations

Somalia condemns in the strongest terms all human rights violations and abuses and violations of international human rights conventions both within our borders and globally. Somalia is a signatory to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and upholds core international human rights treaties.

2. Human rights in times of war and peace

The respect and adherence to human rights is fragile without the complete peaceful resolution of conflict. The fight against Al-Shabab and freeing the Somali people from their terrorist rein is seeking to restore the dignity, peace and rights of the Somali people. Terrorist actions carried out by these insurgent groups are often characterised by wide spread violence, devastating loss of lives, abuses of children and women, and direct attacks on infrastructure such as wells, schools and hospitals. During this very critical time where we are at risk of famine, these insurgent groups are obstructing access to humanitarian aid and food and medicine causing people to starve to death. There are grave acts of human rights abuses that we are strongly and actively fighting against right now.

These grave acts require extreme but measured responses, and the Somali Federal Government (FGS) is integrating human rights principles in its security approaches and working with UN actors and international community to build in training and protocols that ensure the adherence to human rights principles such as human rights training for our security forces.

Furthermore, the FGS recognize that human rights violation by any actor and the prevalence of fear are in themselves threats to security. It is integral to our peace and security strategy to ensure that we take a human rights principled approach to our reconciliation efforts, protecting the rights, well-being and the voices of our people.

3. Post-conflict, fragility and institutional building

The Federal Government of Somalia has been working diligently on two fronts – fighting terrorist groups while restoring the functions and services of the state. In this post conflict environment there continues to be weaknesses in our judicial and security sector as well as limited access to justice, protection of IDPS, and access to life saving services such as health. These are not deliberate actions to limit or violate the human rights of our people, these are weaknesses that are indicative of a fragile country that has limited resources and is in the process of building our institutions.

We have laid out an ambitious plan for the peace, security and development of Somalia, prioritizing the meaningful inclusion and empowerment of our people and the accountability of our government.

4. Media during times of conflict

The fight against Al-Shabab requires a multi-faceted approach, that includes addressing the wide-spread false ideology that has been prevalent in different parts of the country for more than a decade. It is well known that terrorist groups, globally, are media savvy and have strategically used media outlets, specifically social media, to grow their base and support their terrorist agenda.

In Somalia, this has partly been possible due to years of unregulated environment including lack of laws and procedures governing the media sector as well as the limited enforcement capacity of the past. This has resulted in both a flourishing and free Somali media, but also propaganda outlets that are supporting the messaging of Al-Shabab.

We plan to address this through strengthening our regulatory environment, and promoting principles of free, fair and integrity journalism. As regard to Abdalla Ahmed Moomin’s case the FGS guarantee that due process has and will be followed. However, the FGS will not interfere with the independence of the judiciary institutions.


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