Sakset/Fra hofta

Al Shabaab-militsen er av samme støpning som islamistiske militser andre steder.
Synden skal renses ut med hard hånd. Om natten deles det ut brev med krav om at vedkommende slutter med det ene eller annet: Mogadishus eneste kino har fått kniven på strupen.

Forrige uke erklærte Al Shabaab at alle hvite var fiender og skulle komme seg ut.

Like the Taliban in Afghanistan, Al-Shabab does not approve of the showing of films.

Soon Abdullah’s cinema was the last one standing in Mogadishu and he was threatened repeatedly. «They came with weapons, surrounded my cinema and told me, ‘We will kill you if you don’t close’,» he said.

Al-Shabab, now an autonomous rebel group which has added an explosive element to the combustible mix of Mogadishu’s militias, enforces strict sharia (Islamic law) and uses tactics imported from the global jihadi movement. As in Afghanistan, those who work or trade with the government risk being branded as spies or collaborators and beheaded as a warning to others.

Members of Al-Shabab deliver «night letters» to businessmen and others they wish to intimidate. One such letter listed «traitors assisting the occupiers who attacked the country» and warned of action if they did not make amends in 48 hours.

Det går et antivestlig drag gjennom Al Shaabab, og forrige uke varslet de at alle hvite ville være fiender. Flere er allerede drept.

In February a roadside bomb killed three people working for Médecins Sans Frontières, forcing the aid organisation to withdraw all its international staff. Last month Murray Watson, 69, a British flood prevention expert, was kidnapped by six gunmen in the south of the country. He and a Kenyan colleague are still missing.

Two Somali-born Britons who had returned to build a school in the town of Baladwayne were shot dead by rebels with links to Al-Shabab. Last week the group announced that it would target all white people in Somalia.

En grunn til at alle hvite nå erklæres som fiender, kan være at amerikanerne «tok ut» Al Shaababs militære leder for et par uker siden, sammen med 24 andre. Det var et hardt slag for militsen. Ayro regnes som ansvarlig for drap på minst ti utlendinger.

Aden Hashi Ayro, one of its leaders, was killed with 24 others in a predawn US airstrike on his home in Dhusa Mareb, several hundred miles north of the capital earlier this month. Ayro, Al-Shabab’s military commander who was trained in Afghanistan, had been blamed for the deaths of at least 10 foreigners, including Kate Peyton, a BBC news producer, who was killed outside her hotel in Mogadishu in 2005.

Det er med fare for sitt liv at man er journalist i Somalia. Al Shaabab ga nylig instruks om hvordan det skal skrives:

Journalists are routinely harassed. Editors and broadcasters received a letter from Al-Shabab last week instructing them to stop referring to the government and to say «puppets» instead. They were told to call dead insurgents «martyrs».

Forholdene for de internt fordrevne er meget harde. Mogadishu var tidligere en by på 3 millioner. Nå løper en rekke av improviserte hytter av kvister fra Mogadishu til byen Afgoye, over 2 mil unna, på begge sider av veien.

South of Mogadishu are the camps for internally displaced refugees. These makeshift huts and shelters fashioned from twigs and cardboard boxes spread along both sides of the road for 15 miles towards the town of Afgoye.

Ahmed Osman and his wife Khadija Yusuf were rebuilding their tiny shelter with branches they had gathered. «It had almost fallen down and it will rain soon. We can’t afford any plastic sheets,» Ahmed said. Khadija added there was little chance of it being safe for them to return to Mogadishu.

Islamists target Somalis in terror campaign