11 February 2013

Somalia: Women's Handball Tournament Concludes in Mogadishu

Somalia's fourth women's handball tournament concluded in Mogadishu on Friday (February 8th), with the police women's Heegan team beating Horseed 12-5 at July 1st Stadium, Somalia's RBC Radio reported.

Thousands of spectators attended the final match between the two teams, including National Olympic Committee (NOC) President Duran Ahmed Farah and Somalia's first international basketball referee Hajji Mohamed Ahmed Olow.

"Today Somali women are freely back to sport. The peaceful atmosphere here is encouraging an uncountable number of young Somalis, both boys and girls, to show up for sport," Farah said. "On behalf of the Somali NOC, I promise that we will do our utmost to help the promotion of fully developed sport in our country."

The Somali men's handball tournament is also under way, with the final match to be held on Friday (February 15th).

Also on Friday, the NOC and Mogadishu Mayor Mohamed Ahmed Nur co-organised a five-kilometre peace run in Mogadishu, Somalia's Risaala Radio reported.

"This is the first such peace run we have organised in more than two decades," Farah told the media. "The capital currently seems more peaceful in comparison with the previous years, so the Somali Olympic committee intends this run to encourage the increasing peace and stability and to show the outside world that Somalia has fully returned."

"We have been hopeless for decades and decades, but now big changes are in place and Somalis have become hopeful -- we want to build a good future and heal the past wounds with sports, because sports create public integration, joyful life and helps people go forward to civilisation and development," he said.

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