US president urges global response
US President Barack Obama Friday called for an "international response" to the devastating famine in the Horn of Africa after meeting with the leaders of four French-speaking African nations.
Millions are in danger of starvation due to a prolonged drought in the Horn of Africa, and Obama regretted that the famine was still not gaining enough attention in the United States.
"We discussed how we can partner together to avert the looming humanitarian crisis in Eastern Africa. I think it hasn't got as much attention here in the United States as it deserves," Obama said.
He added that the famine in East Africa, where nearly half of Somalia's 10 million people are in need of relief assistance, "is going to require an international response and Africa will have to be a partner to make sure that tens of thousands of people don't starve to death."
For Somalia's al-Qaeda-linked rebels,however, the drought devastating parts of the country is being exploited by external enemies, claiming that local Muslims were adequately addressing the crisis.
The Al-Shebab insurgents have expelled several foreign aid groups from regions under their control since 2009 and reiterated recently that the ban was still in force after the United Nations declared famine in two regions they rule.
In a speech to the rebel radio, Rage said local traders and other residents have been the main providers of help to the drought-hit population and that "God did not make them need an outside enemy or non-Muslims, the people in the country fed them very well."
"We need Muslim people to be aware that the external enemy especially non-Muslims have been thinking of a new strategy.