For years the Islamist extremist group Al-Shabaab was seen as the most cohesive, united and powerful force in the failed state of Somalia. But it is now disintegrating like a house of cards because of internal divisions and power struggles within its leadership, according to Abdiwahab Sheikh Abdisamad, a history and political science professor at Kenya’s Kenyatta University.
After his first year as president of the world’s most dangerous and failed state, Hassan Sheikh Mohamud is still grappling with limited financial resources, corruption, a lack of service delivery, and the ongoing assassinations of government officials, including attempts on his own life.
As the Somali government announced it would set up a coastguard to combat piracy in this Horn of African nation, insecurity is emerging as the biggest challenge that the government faces – and it is only getting worse.
At 18, Farah Osman should not be a battle-hardened soldier. He should not have spent the last seven years fighting for the Somali Islamist extremist group Al-Shabaab, or have been trained by foreign jihadists in handling and repairing weapons and improving his shooting skills.