Somalia: June 28, 2002


At least 23 people were killed and another 40 injured in the latest clashes between rival clans in the Golol valley (about 435 miles/650km northeast of Mogadishu) on 26 June. Local sources reported that a total of at least 600 heavily-armed Saad and Dir clan militiamen using heavy weapons mounted on 10 pickup trucks fought against each other. According to radio reports from the area received in Mogadishu, hundreds of families in the nearby villages of Garba'ad and Bur-Qallo fled after the fighting broke out. The two militia bands appeared to be regrouping on the morning of the 27th. 

The fighting followed a peace deal reached between the clans on the 25th for control of Gellinsor village, 170 miles northwest of Mogadishu. Those deaths were over the ownership of a camel and thought to be solved when the families were given camels and guns as restitution, with one family given a girl to marry the brother of one of the deceased. The cause of the current firefights is still unknown, but rumors have it that the fighting is over the slaying of four men several weeks ago.

Follow up on last month's clashes in Mogadishu sparked off by an attack on minister's residence by Dhere's militiamen, at least 22 people were killed and another 35 injured in a clash between supporters of Transitional National Government (TNG) Interior Minister Dahir Dayah and warlord Mohamed Dhere outside El-baharaf village (about 95 miles north of Mogadishu) on 24 June. 

Dhere claimed his forces had engaged in fighting to stop government forces from destabilizing the Shabelle region, while Dayah accused Dhere of attacking pro-government villages in the area and bragged that his forces had forced the enemy to retreat. The clashes could degenerate into tribal warfare between the Agon-Yar and the Warsangeli sub-clans (to which Dayah and Dhere belong, respectively). - Adam Geibel


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