Protection Cluster Update Weekly Report - 23th September 2011

from Inter-Agency Standing Committee Somalia
Published on 23 Sep 2011

This update provides information on the protection environment in Somalia, including apparent violations of Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law as reported during the last two weeks through the IASC Somalia Protection Cluster monitoring systems. Incidents mentioned in this report are not exhaustive. They are intended to highlight credible reports in order to inform and prompt programming and advocacy initiatives by the humanitarian community and national authorities.

General Overview

Heavy fighting in southern regions between Al Shabaab and Transitional Federal Government (TFG) has led to heightened protection concerns throughout the reporting period. In Ceel Waaq, 43 people were killed and almost 80 wounded and an unknown number displaced following fighting between the TFG and Al Shabaab forces. The civilian population continues to face insecurity due to the ongoing conflict compounded by limited access to basic services and humanitarian support.

In other regions, the famine has continued to take its toll on the Somali population. This week the United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF) stated that Somalia has the worst international mortality rate for children. Furthermore, local sources in the district of Eldher town, Galgaduud region reported that 30 people had died as a result of starvation and malnutrition-related health complications. Friction over limited resources has also increased. Reports from Mogadishu suggest that the aid from various international agencies coming into Somalia from the city’s port was being blocked by harbour authorities for unknown reasons.

Concerns regarding increase in protection cases related to recruitment of child soldiers, separated and unaccompanied minors fleeing the conflict have grown following reports that 80 per cent of the Somali refugee population fleeing to Kenya and Ethiopia are children. Forced recruitment remains a major protection issue in Southern and Central Somalia as last week more youth were reported to have been recruited by Al Shabaab in Middle Shabelle.