15 December 2006

Somalia: Islamic Courts Deny Al-Qaeda Operatives In Country

Mogadishu — Following the announcement that al-Qaeda members are leading the Union of Islamic Courts in Mogadishu by US assistant secretary of state for foreign affairs Jendayi Frazer, Islamic Courts information secretary Abdirahim Ali Mudey rebuffed the announcement, calling it fake and baseless.

Mudey denied that al-Qaeda operatives were inside Somalia. "United States government is determined to encumber the progress the Islamic Courts in Somalia are attaining, we will bring Islamist jihadists in Somalia if American troops try to come to Somalia", he threatened.

Earlier Islamists publicly told rally makers in the capital they would invite Muslim jihadists around the world in the country if foreign troops try to intercede the country militarily.

Yusuf Mohommed Siad Indho-adde, the chief of the Islamic Courts security section, warned African states not to send their troops to Somalia or that Somalia would the graveyard for the African troops.

UN Security Council members unanimously approved a US backed draft resolution to lift the arms embargo that was imposed on Somalia in 1992 to let regional peacekeepers enter the country and support the tenuous government based in the town of Baidoa, 245 km southwest of the capital Mogadishu.

Asked if the American government had particular interest in Somalia, Mudey said "The American government wants to impose democracy in Somalia and that is completely unacceptable to Islamic Courts, because we know the Koran and we believe it is our constitution".

Mudey's remarks directly contradicts Ms Frazer's who said that America was strong-minded in finding a democratic government in Somalia and that US could not accept an Islamic republic in the Horn of Africa.

Somalia's central government collapsed in 1991 when warlords overthrew president Said Barre and then turned on each other over the control of the country.

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