US reopens embassy in Somalia after nearly three decades

US announces re-establishment of embassy in capital Mogadishu, after closure in 1991 as Somalia plunged into civil war.


The United States has reopened its embassy in Somalia’s capital, Mogadishu, nearly three decades after it was shut as the Horn of Africa nation plunged into civil war.

Washington closed its embassy during the 1991 overthrow of then-President Siad Barre’s military regime which ushered in decades of chaos. However, diplomatic relations have strengthened in recent years.

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New head of AFRICOM visits Somalia as pressure on al-Shabab increases

By Stephen Losey

Army Gen. Stephen Townsend, the new commander of U.S. Africa Command, visited Somalia on Wednesday and pledged to continue pressuring violent extremists such as al-Shabab.

Townsend is now on his first trip to the African continent since he took charge of AFRICOM July 26. He met with Somali Prime Minister Hassan Ali Khayre in the capital city of Mogadishu, as well as U.S. Ambassador Donald Yamamoto and senior Somali military leadership, AFRICOM said in a release. Continue reading “New head of AFRICOM visits Somalia as pressure on al-Shabab increases”

U.S. senior official to discuss democratic transition with Sudanese leaders – Sudan Tribune: Plural news and views on Sudan

U.S. Undersecretary of State for Political Affairs David Hale will visit Khartoum on Wednesday for talks on the democratic transition in Sudan with the leaders of the Transitional Military Council and the Forces of Freedom and Change.

Hale’s visit to Sudan is part of a regional tour including Kenya, Somalia and Sudan from 5 to 7 August. Continue reading “U.S. senior official to discuss democratic transition with Sudanese leaders – Sudan Tribune: Plural news and views on Sudan”

Somalia’s President Gives Up US Citizenship, But Unclear Why

The office of Somalia’s president says he is giving up his United States citizenship but it is not immediately clear why. A statement posted on Twitter on Thursday says President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed made the decision voluntarily, with lawyers involved. It says Somalia’s constitution allows for dual citizenship. Read more from source Continue reading Somalia’s President Gives Up US Citizenship, But Unclear Why

How one former Minnesotan is modernizing government — in the Somali state of Puntland

By Ibrahim Hirsi

For the better part of the 2000s, Yasin Jama spent most of his free time with friends at Starbucks coffee shops in Minneapolis, contemplating what he could do for Somalia, especially the semi-autonomous northeastern state of Puntland from which he hails. Continue reading “How one former Minnesotan is modernizing government — in the Somali state of Puntland”

Veteran US diplomat James Swan named UN envoy for Somalia

Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has appointed veteran U.S. diplomat James Swan as the U.N.’s top envoy for Somalia, replacing Nicholas Haysom of South Africa, who was expelled in January. U.N. deputy spokesman Farhan Haq announced the appointment Thursday and said Swan spent most of his career “in African countries facing complex political transitions.” He served as U.S. ambassador to Congo from 2013-2016, U.S. special representative for … Continue reading Veteran US diplomat James Swan named UN envoy for Somalia

What is the Combined Joint Task Force Horn of Africa?

By Katie Lange

U.S. service members with the Combined Joint Task Force Horn of Africa have spent the past few weeks helping victims of Cyclone Idai, a devastating storm that slammed into Mozambique and Zimbabwe in March.

Most Americans don’t know a whole lot about the Combined Joint Task Force Horn of Africa — CJTF HOA, for short — or our relationship with the countries it involves, but the region in which it operates is vital to U.S. interests.

Not sure why? Here are some details that might help explain it. Continue reading “What is the Combined Joint Task Force Horn of Africa?”

American military preparing for seven-year mission to battle Islamist militants in Somalia

By Brian Brinker

President Donald Trump signed an executive order that will extend the national emergency declaration in Somalia for at least one more year. The Pentagon, however, is buckling down for an even longer mission, one that could extend for seven years or more. President Trump cited the Islamist insurgency in the country as an “unusual and extraordinary threat.”

Currently, the U.S. Special Operations Forces are working to establish and train an elite unit of Somali soldiers to combat al-Shabaab militants. The group has been linked to al-Qaeda. While President Trump has sought to diminish America’s large and expensive military presence across the world, some hotspots remain too dangerous to ignore. Continue reading “American military preparing for seven-year mission to battle Islamist militants in Somalia”

U.S. Acknowledges Airstrike in Somalia Caused Civilian Deaths

By Thomas Gibbons-Neff

WASHINGTON — After denying allegations last month that United States airstrikes had killed civilians in Somalia, the American military said on Friday that an April 2018 attack left two people dead.

The announcement comes after Gen. Thomas D. Waldhauser, the head of Africa Command, ordered a review of all airstrikes conducted in Somalia since 2017.

The internal assessment was prompted by pressure from lawmakers and an Amnesty International report released last month that found evidence of five strikes in Somalia that had killed more than a dozen civilians. Continue reading “U.S. Acknowledges Airstrike in Somalia Caused Civilian Deaths”

Somali Who Died in Mogadishu was refued asylum in America

The Somali native, who’d sought refuge from the Horn of Africa country’s armed conflict in South Africa and then in the United States, was among 12 people killed by a car bomb that exploded outside a restaurant on Mogadishu’s busy Maka Al-Mukarama road last Thursday.

Hassan, 29, with a wife and 6-year-old daughter, had failed in a bid for U.S. asylum. He had spent all of his nearly two years in the United States in the custody of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) before being returned to Somalia in January 2017.

Continue reading “Somali Who Died in Mogadishu was refued asylum in America”