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Monitors Needed On Ethiopia-Somalia Border - Envoy

ISSUE 247
Front Page
Index
Headlines

Extremists Linked To The Terrorist Courts Of Mogadishu Burn Haatuf Newspaper In Buroa

IGAD Forces Must Stay Out Of The Territories Of Somaliland

Somalia's Islamic Group Imposes Harsh Rules On Media, Says Press Watchdog

UN Pulls Staff Out Of Somalia

Djibouti To Hold Summit To End Somali Violence

Range Resources Signs US$50 Million Deal With Canadian Canmex

Regional Affairs

Garbage Collection Puts Money In The Pockets Of The Poo

U.S.-Ethiopian Security Ties Deepen

CANMEX Signs MOU To Acquire Interest In
Two Oil And Gas Prospects In Puntland, Somali

Editorial
Special Report

International News

Somalia: Washington's New Approach To The SICC

If Killing Civilians Is Terror, Then Who's The Terrorist?

Muslim Cabbies Refuse Alcohol-Toting Fares

Two Teens Charged As Adults In Killing

Monitors Needed On Ethiopia-Somalia Border - Envoy

Scholar Calls On International Community To Interfere In Somalia

Case Of Ends And Means In Conflict

FEATURES & COMMENTARY

As Threat Of Regional Conflict Grows, A Critical Moment For Somalia

Ibis Triumph Raises Hopes For Rarest Bird

The Emerging Russian Giant Plays its Cards Strategically

Ex-Model Iman Hopes To Help Working Women

Islamic Courts Union Stirs Kenya

Somalia : Radical Militant Youth Group Becoming Dominant - Analyst

Food for thought

Opinions

Somaliland Native Doctors In The Diaspora Should Contribute To Their Community
Like Dr. Idan

Three Things That The World Can Do In Somalia To Avoid A Taliban-like Regime

Great Things That Happen In Somaliland

Here Again The Warlords Became-Islamo-Warlords!

Driven To Death By Political
Instability And Poverty

Reply To The Article Titled: ''Security Threat To Somaliland From Islamic Courts'' By Rashid Nur

Exposing The Lexicon Of The Anti-Somaliland Camp

BOOK REVIEW: LADH


MOGADISHU , Oct 10, 2006 – Neutral monitors should patrol the border between Ethiopia and Somalia to keep troops from both sides crossing over and sparking conflict, Italy's special envoy to Somalia said.

The Islamists who have seized power across much of Somalia's south since taking Mogadishu in June declared holy war on Monday against Ethiopia, which it accuses of invading the country to prop up the interim government.

The call for jihad came hours after government fighters that residents said were accompanied by Ethiopian soldiers took the Islamist outpost of Buur Hakaba for a few hours before leaving.

Buur Hakaba is 30 km (20 miles) from the government's base in Baidoa, the only real area it controls.

"I think the monitors can be a solution to the Somalia-Ethiopian crisis," said Mario Raffaelli, Italy's special envoy to its former colony Somalia. "But of course both of them have to agree."

In an interview late on Monday in Mogadishu, Raffaelli said the monitors did not need to be armed but had to be independent.

"The monitoring force will not be an aggressive force. They can be from a neutral country," he said.

The monitors could be drawn from the member countries of three diplomatic bodies that have a hand in the Somali peace process -- the Arab League, east Africa's Inter-governmental Authority on Development or the U.S.-backed International Contact Group on Somalia.

If monitors were in place, propaganda would be easier to counter with factual information, he said.

"This finger-pointing between the government, Islamic courts and Ethiopia will stop," Raffaelli said.

'AVOID RETALIATION'

The rise of the Islamists has all but marginalized Somalia's interim government -- the 14th attempt at restoring central rule since the 1991 ouster of former dictator Mohamed Siyad Barre.

The internationally recognized government has almost no control of the country and enjoys the military protection of ally Ethiopia, witnesses say.

Addis Ababa denies sending any soldiers except military advisers to Somalia.

The Islamists, keenly attuned to Somalis' hatred of outside interference and view that Ethiopia is a Christian imperialist power, have portrayed Addis Ababa's support of the government as an affront to the Somalia's sovereignty.

Conflict could spell disaster for the stability of the east and Horn of Africa, diplomats say.

"I hope the Islamists will be wise enough to avoid retaliation," Raffaelli said. "It will really be a disaster because if fighting starts, if something on a large scale happens in Somalia, it will affect all its neighbors."

Raffaelli said he was in Mogadishu to organize informal consultations between the government and the Islamists before a third round of Arab League power-sharing talks due on Oct. 30 in the Sudanese capital Khartoum.

Source: Reuters Foundation

 


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