10 March 2009

Somalia: Cabinet Approves Implementing Islamic Law

Mogadishu — Somalia's council of ministers on Tuesday endorsed a plan to introduce sharia, or Islamic law in the country, a key demand by Islamists who are opposed to the government, officials said.

"The cabinet members discussed deeply on the issue regarding the Islamic sharia law and the members unanimously approved full implementation," Information Minister Farhan Ali Mohamoud said.

"Islamic Sharia is the only option to get solutions for the problems in this country," he told reporters.

All the 20 of the country's 36 ministers present at Tuesday's session backed the move.

However, the proposal must be presented to parliament for approval as it is not part of the country's transitional federal charter.

Last month, President Sharif Sheikh Ahmed agreed to proposals by local and foreign religious leaders for a truce with Islamists and the implementation of sharia.

Islamic clerics, clan elders, and Islamist insurgents have been demanding the imposition of Sharia in the country.

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