Sharia Law Imposed On Chaotic Somalia


(FEDERALJACK)   After years of conflict and isolation, Somalia found itself in turmoil in 2006. During a period of intense drought and subsequent flooding, much of the country was under the control of the Union of Islamic courts, who imposed Sharia law and a new conflict with Ethiopia. 

“The gun is the authority here – The AK47”, says a displaced Somalian. Yet after 15 years of clan-based fighting, an organisation emerged to exercise law from the country’s capital. In 2006, the Union of Islamic courts beat factional fighting out of Mogadishu. Suddenly, foreign food aid began to circulate into and out of the city. A new type of order and security was established. The aims of the Islamic group were far reaching, aiming “beyond peace”, and looking to a future of social services that meet the requirements of the thousands of starving and displaced Somalians. But with the country in a critical state after a catastrophic drought and famine, the impending conflict declared with Ethiopia is an ill omen for a wounded population. Whatever the outcome for the fledgling court instigating Sharia law and Jihad, UN humanitarian official Philippe Lazzarini hopes for continued aid: “We really hope if [war] is the case, to allow these people to get necessary assistance, protection, and their human dignity to be respected.”

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