- Somalia’s radical Islamists group, al-Shabaab, has ordered the closure of three United Nations agencies, accusing them of going against Islamic principles and practices.
In a statement issued by the group, it called the three agencies, the United Nations Development Program, the United Nations Department of Safety and Security and the United Nations Political Office for Somalia, ‘enemies of Islam’.
It accused the three agencies of working against the Somali Muslim people and against the establishment of an Islamic state. “Some of these agencies have been found guilty of training and supporting the apostate government and its soldiers,” the statement said.
Al-Shabaab, which controls large portions of the country, said it has also established an office to register and monitor all other non-governmental agencies and foreign agencies working in Somalia.
Reports have revealed that members of the al-Shabab also raided the offices of the UN Political Office for Somalia, the Development Programme and the Department of Safety and Security in the Horn of Africa state.
The UN statement said al-Shabaab looted its offices in Baidoa and Wajid, both in south-central Somalia, with vehicles and communications equipment stolen, further saying the office in Baidoa was evacuated, while operations in Wajid continue.
Islamist groups including al-Shabaab and the Hisb-ul-Islam movement have gained control of most of southern and central Somalia in their bid to oust President Sheikh Sharif Sheikh Ahmed, who took the presidency in January this year following the UN brokered peace.
Since Ethiopia withdrew its troops in Somalia, the two Islamists militant groups have been unable to penetrate into key areas of the capital defended by AMISOM troops and tanks.
Al-Shabaab has been accused by the US of providing safe-haven and logistical support to al-Qaeda, the terrorist organisation led by Osama bin Laden.
There has not had a functioning central administration in Somalia, since the ouster of Mohamed Siad Barre, the former dictator, in 1991.
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