Warning over HR situation in Somalia
The UN independent expert on the situation of human rights in Somalia, Dr Shamsul Bari, issued a strong warning on the security, human rights and humanitarian situation in Somalia, says a press release issued from Geneva.
Dr Bari described as "extremely serious" the situation in South and Central Somalia, where civilians continue to bear the brunt of the fighting between forces of the Transitional Federal Government forces (TFG) and Islamist armed groups.
At the end of his fourth monitoring mission to the Horn of Africa, the UN expert shared reports about grave violations of women and children's rights, including the recruitment and use of children by several parties to the conflict. He added that "corporal punishment in the name of Sharia law by Islamist groups, including floggings and amputations following summary proceedings, arbitrary detention, death threats and intimidation are reportedly taking place."
"The Islamist forces fighting to topple the TFG are reported to have carried out extrajudicial executions, planted mines, bombs and other explosive devices in civilian areas, and used civilians as human shields," said Dr Bari, adding that "fighters from both sides are reported to have fired mortars indiscriminately into areas populated or frequented by civilians."
The UN expert stressed that "journalists and human rights defenders in all parts of Somalia continue to face severe restrictions, increasing death threats and are often become victims of targeted killings for their work."