100.000 people have fled from Somalia because of violence and drought since January 2011
U.S. intensify war against terrorism in Somalia
The exodus of civilians from Somalia has massively increased in June 2011, the Society for Threatened Peoples (STP) announced in Göttingen on Wednesday. "Since the beginning of June 2011, more than 24.000 people have fled from Somalia because of the prolonged drought and the war," reported the STP's expert on questions regarding Africa, Ulrich Delius. All in all, around 100.000 Somalis have tried to seek refuge in neighboring countries in 2011. "As there is no end to the drought in sight and the U.S. are also enforciong the war against terrorism in Somalia, the exodus will surely increase. New U.S.-military equipment will also intensify the conflict between the radical Islamic militia, Somalia's transitional government and the peacekeepers of the African Union (AMISOM)", warned Delius.
"Considering the misery of the refugees and the disastrous situation of the civilian population, it is completely incomprehensible how little initiative the International Community shows to ensure peace in Somalia. In July 2011, Germany should seize the opportunity of its Presidency of the Security Council to send out a clear signal for peace in this country, that has been affected so badly by the war and the climate changes," criticized Delius.
End of last week, the U.S. Department of Defence authorized another 45 million US-Dollars worth of military equipment for the AMISOM peacekeeping force and their war against terrorism in Somalia. For the soldiers of Burundi and Uganda four drones, night vision devices, surveillance systems and communication equipment will be provided. Currently, there are about 9.000 soldiers from Burundi and Uganda – as a part of AMISOM – in charge of protecting the transitional government from attacks by radical Islamic militia and guarding humanitarian supplies to the civil population.
While only a monthly average of 6.000 – 7.000 refugees from Somalia sought shelter in neighboring Kenya in 2010, this number has increased to 10.000 a month in the beginning of 2011 – and within the last two weeks even 20.000 Somalis requested protection in northeastern Kenya. Relief organizations point out that there are about 800 children a day among the newly arriving refugees seeking help in Kenya's Dadaab. Many of these children are malnourished and have spent weeks on the run before asking for admission at a camp in Kenya. With approximately 750.000 refugees – who mainly live in neighboring states – Somalia is now third most common country of origin of refugees worldwide.
Due to the ongoing drought and the armed conflict, the number of IDPs in Somalia has increased dramatically to about 1.5 million people. Currently, alone in Mogadishu – the Somali capital – and the surrounding region, there are 870.000 Somalis on the run and 300.000 of them already since 2010.