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WOMEN'S UN REPORT NETWORK - WUNRN SOMALI WOMEN - STORIES OF CONFLICT, ADVOCACY FOR PEACE United Nations Human Rights Council June 2, 2009 Geneva, Switzerland.

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Presentation on theme: "WOMEN'S UN REPORT NETWORK - WUNRN SOMALI WOMEN - STORIES OF CONFLICT, ADVOCACY FOR PEACE United Nations Human Rights Council June 2, 2009 Geneva, Switzerland."— Presentation transcript:

1 WOMEN'S UN REPORT NETWORK - WUNRN SOMALI WOMEN - STORIES OF CONFLICT, ADVOCACY FOR PEACE United Nations Human Rights Council June 2, 2009 Geneva, Switzerland


3 WUNRN SOMALIA - A FEMININE FACE OF WAR Halima, a resident of Somalia's capital, Mogadishu, is the distraught mother of a 22-year- old militiaman hit in the brain by a bullet. Behind her, a wall in her home is ridden with bullet holes from neighborhood fighting. New York Times Article By JEFFREY GETTLEMANJEFFREY GETTLEMAN Published: January 19, 2007 MOGADISHU, Somalia, Jan. 18Somalia


5 Somalia Has Not Ratified CEDAW


7 WUNRN Somalia - Women & Girls - Number of Displaced in Somalia Hits 1 Million Mark – UN Agency Displaced Somalis in a makeshift camp 20 November 2007 – The number of people displaced within Somalia by recent violence has hit the 1 million mark, a spokesperson for the United Nations refugee agency said today, warning that conditions are worsening as numbers swell. Of this figure, 600,000 have fled the “lawless Somali capital, Mogadishu,” Jennifer Pagonis of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) told journalists in Geneva. One third of those left “entire neighbourhoods in the volatile capital empty” over the past two weeks alone.told Mogadishu is also now home to an estimated 43,000 internally displaced people (IDPs), a 10,000 increase from a week ago, UNHCR said. “At the same time, estimates on the number of IDPs living in increasingly desperate conditions in more than 60 makeshift settlements along the 30-km stretch of road linking Mogadishu and the nearby town of Afgooye have shot up to nearly 200,000 – a 50-per cent increase in the past two weeks alone,” said Ms. Pagonis.

8 WUNRN MAKING MOTHERHOOD SAFER IN SOMALIA MAKING MOTHERHOOD SAFER IN SOMALIA Since gaining independence in 1960, Somalia and its people have suffered countless disasters, both natural and political. The country’s first president was assassinated just months into his term; Mohammed Siad Barre promptly took his place, a commander in the Somali military and an avowed socialist. Overnight, Barre transformed Somalia’s post-colonial democracy into a brutal dictatorship, purging the government rolls of non-socialists and executing potential rivals. Despite growing internal unrest, he continued to rule until 1991, when a concerted group of Somali clans forced him into exile. But, instead of order, anarchy and famine followed. In recent years, the quality of life for Somalis has plummeted to global record lows. As drought and famine continue to plague the country, particularly the Lower Juba Valley, the average life expectancy has dropped to 46 years. Even more alarming is the effect this healthcare crisis has had on Somalia’s mothers and children; 240 children die per 1,000 live births and 1,600 women per 100,000 live births. In the United States, those numbers are only 7 and 12 respectively. Women and children wait to receive 10kg of Unimix at the supplementary feeding center in Rabdure, Somalia.

9 WUNRN UN Agencies Team Up to Help Somali Rape Victims 26 October 2007 – Amid the chaos of fighting and displacement in Somalia, United Nations agencies are working to address the growing problem of sexual violence in the country, which has not had a functioning government since 1991 and where an upsurge in violence has forced thousands to flee their homes. In Galkayo, host to an estimated 50,000 internally displaced persons hosts internally displaced persons (IDPs), victims told personnel from the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) of atrocities they endured.IDPsUNHCR “After years of war, rape has become a threat to women in Somalia when they move along roads, due to the presence of militia at illegal roadblocks. They are also at risk in IDP settlements located on the outskirts of towns such as Galkayo, which are too isolated to be secure,” the agency said in a news release. It pointed out that in Somali society, where rape is taboo, perpetrators are rarely brought to justice. “Cases are usually dealt with through traditional means, with the attacker having to pay compensation to the victim's father or husband, but never to her.”

10 WUNRN SOMALI CRISIS - WOMEN & GIRLS AID AGENCIES URGE WORLD NOT TO FORGET SOMALI CRISIS 26 Mar 2008 Source: Reuters NAIROBI, March 26 (Reuters) - Forty aid agencies urged the world on Wednesday to focus attention on Somalia's "catastrophic" humanitarian crisis where hundreds of thousands of people are suffering from war, drought and food shortages. Their statement, issued by Oxfam, said Somalia now had one million internal refugees, their numbers swelled by an exodus of 20,000 a month from Mogadishu, where Islamist insurgents are fighting the Ethiopian-backed government. Record high food prices, hyper-inflation and drought across the Horn of Africa nation were exacerbating the situation and will worsen if seasonal rains due from April fail as predicted. "The crisis engulfing Somalia has deteriorated dramatically while access to people in need continues to decrease," the agencies said, citing attacks on aid workers and looting of supplies.

11 WUNRN SOMALIA - PHOTOS OF WOMEN & GIRLS IN SOMALIA CRISIS New York Times - March 29, 2008 Jehad Nga for The New York Times Somalia Women and children waited for food from the United Nation's World Food Program. Most of those waiting to be fed in Mogadishu were women and children.

12 WUNRN THE FEMALE FACE & STORY OF FAMINE & STARVATION IN SOMALIA New York Times - May 17, 2008 Famine Looms as Wars Rend Horn of Africa DAGAARI, Somalia — The global food crisis has arrived at Safia Ali’s hut. She cannot afford rice or wheat or powdered milk anymore. At the same time, a drought has decimated her family’s herd of goats, turning their sole livelihood into a pile of bleached bones and papery skin.Somalia The result is that Ms. Safia, a 25-year-old mother of five, has not eaten in a week. Her 1-year-old son is starving too, an adorable, listless boy who doesn’t even respond to a pinch.

13 WUNRN UN-INSTRAW - SOMALIA - ITALY SOMALIA DIASPORA – WOMEN FOR PEACE: Somalia Project on the Implementation of Resolution 1325 Since the collapse of Siad Barre’s regime in 1991, a highly chaotic armed conflict has plagued Somalia, with the result that the civilian population currently lives in a state of humanitarian crisis that has made Somalia one of the poorest countries in the world. International Conference on Women, Peace and Security in Somalia From September 2nd to 6th 2008 in Dar-es– Salaam, Tanzania, UN-INSTRAW and ADEP will co-organize a conference on Women, Peace and Security in Somalia.

14 WUNRN The Terror of Motherhood in Somaliland and Women’s Rights to Safe Care A very distraught old woman came to Edna Adan Maternity Hospital in Hargeisa, Somaliland, appealing to us to help her transport to the hospital a woman who had given birth five days earlier and who still had the placenta inside her. Those of us at the hospital are not sure how this could be possible and we ask her again whether she means five hours. She is sure about the number of days, and quotes the day the woman had Somaliland is an independent de facto republic located in the Horn of Africa. The North East African country remains unrecognized by any country or international organizationde factoHorn of Africaunrecognized delivered which, indeed, was five days earlier. She also tells us that the woman may not be alive by the time we get to her. We prepared the ambulance, put in our emergency obstetric kit and set out towards the home at the opposite end of town from our hospital. We come to a hut with quite a few neighbors and onlookers standing around. Before we get to the patient, we could have been guided to the woman by the smell coming from inside the hut. We find a woman who has bled for several days, is very infected, febrile, dehydrated, has no recordable blood pressure and a weak, rapid pulse.

15 WUNRN SOMALIA: 13 - YEAR OLD GIRL STONED TO DEATH - UPDATED INFORMATION BBC - 4 November 2008 A Young Woman Recently Stoned to Death in Somalia First Pleaded for Her Life, a Witness has told the BBC. "Don't kill me, don't kill me," she said, according to the man who wanted to remain anonymous. A few minutes later, more than 50 men threw stones. Human rights group Amnesty International says the victim was a 13-year-old girl who had been raped. Initial reports had said she was a 23-year-old woman who had confessed to adultery before a Sharia court. Numerous eye-witnesses say she was forced into a hole, buried up to her neck then pelted with stones until she died in front of more than 1,000 people last week. Meanwhile, Islamists in the capital, Mogadishu have carried out a public flogging. Mogadishu is nominally under the control of government forces and their Ethiopian allies, who face frequent attacks by Islamist and nationalist insurgents.

16 WUNRN Somaliland - FGM/C - Estimate 90% of Girls - Infibulation HARGEISA, 3 November 2008 (IRIN) - Hawa* is determined her young daughter will not undergo female genital mutilation/cutting (FGM/C), which is widespread in Somalia's self-declared republic of Somaliland. An estimated 90 percent of girls still undergo the procedure. "I have suffered kidney problems, infections and miscarriages," Somaliland is an independent de facto republic located in the Horn of Africa. The North East African country remains unrecognized by any country or international organizationde factoHorn of Africaunrecognized said Hawa. "I dread the days when my period is close because of the pain I go through; it gets to the point where the pain makes it impossible to do anything. I don’t want my daughter subjected to this kind of life." "Gudnin Fircooni", Pharaonic circumcision or infibulation, as practised in Somaliland, involves cutting off the external genitalia and sewing up the vagina, leaving a small hole for urine and menstrual blood.Pharaonic circumcision

17 WUNRN Somalia - Routinely Targeted: Attacks on Civilians in Somalia SOMALIA: Amnesty Report "Scratches Surface of Atrocities" NAIROBI, 7 May 2008 (IRIN) - The Somali government denied claims by a rights group that its forces and their Ethiopian allies were committing atrocities against the civilian population - even as a civil society source said the report did not go far enough. Government spokesman Abdi Haji Gobdon told IRIN on 7 May that in a war situation "some people may get caught in a crossfire but no civilian is deliberately targeted", insisting that neither the TFG forces nor their Ethiopian allies committed atrocities. Gobdon said the report was "pure propaganda and fabrication". He was reacting to a report issued on 6 May by Amnesty International (AI), which has accused all parties to the conflict of committing war crimes against the civilian population. "The people of Somalia are being killed, raped, tortured; looting is widespread and entire neighbourhoods are being destroyed,” Michelle Kagari, Amnesty's Africa programme deputy director, said in the report.Amnesty International (AI) Up to a million Somalis are internally displaced and living rough in camps, according to aid agencies

18 WUNRN Somalia-Devastation & Humanitarian Crisis HRW Report-Women & Children Human Rights Watch "SO MUCH TO FEAR" - WAR CRIMES & THE DEVASTATION OF SOMALIA December 8, 2008 The 104-page report, "So Much to Fear: War Crimes and the Devastation of Somalia," describes how the Somali Transitional Federal Government (TFG), the Ethiopian forces that intervened in Somalia to support it and insurgent forces have committed widespread and serious violations of the laws of war. Frequent violations include indiscriminate attacks, killings, rape, use of civilians as human shields, and looting. Since early 2007, the escalating conflict has claimed thousands of civilian lives, displaced more than a million people, and driven out most of the population of Mogadishu, the capital. Increasing attacks on aid workers in the past year have severely limited relief operations and contributed to an emerging humanitarian crisis.

19 WUNRN Somalia - Attacks on Aid Workers & Rights Defenders – Severe Women & Children Survival Needs SOMALIA – CRISIS IMPACTS ON WOMEN & CHILDREN MILLIONS AT RISK IN SOMALIA AS ATTACKS ON AID WORKERS ESCALATE 6 November 2008 An escalation of attacks on aid workers and human rights defenders in southern and central Somalia is putting at least 3 million Somalis at even greater risk of malnutrition and disease. Many organizations have suspended programmes and withdrawn staff.

20 UN INDEPENDENT EXPERT ON THE SITUATION OF HUMAN RIGHTS IN SOMALIA UNITED NATIONS Press Release Somalia: UN expert completes his second Field Visit The Independent Expert on the Situation of Human Rights in Somalia, Dr. Shamsul Bari, issued the following statement on the last day of his Second Field Visit to the Horn of Africa and the Middle East.

21 The UPR - UN Universal Periodic Review Report for Somalia Will Be in the 11th Session - 2011

22 International Media Gives Extensive Coverage to Somali Pirates, But What About the Human Rights Issues of Somali Women & Children?

23 WUNRN Somalia-Malnutrition Emergency-Humanitarian Crisis-Report Data-Gender NAIROBI, 23 February 2009 (IRIN) - One in six children in Somalia is acutely malnourished because of high food prices and lack of access to staple foods due to ongoing conflict, according to an early warning report. The emergency is driven by a combination of conflict, hyperinflation and below-normal Deyr (October to December 2008 rains), the Food Security Analysis Unit for Somalia (FAO/FSAU) and the Famine Early Warning Systems Network (FEWS Net) stated in a joint report on 20 February. Lower and Middle Shabelle regions were the worst affected, although the situation had also deteriorated in central Somalia. FSAU and partners conducted 17 nutrition assessments between October and December 2008 and "from these assessments, eight reported global acute malnutrition [GAM] rates below the emergency threshold of 15 percent, three reported rates between 15 and 19.9 percent, with the remaining six reporting rates below 20 percent". A mother and her malnourished child: A report says one in six children in Somalia is acutely malnourished because of high food prices and lack of access to staple foods due to ongoing conflict

24 WUNRN Somalia-Kenya - Refugee Tide of Misery Flees Somalia - Women & Children Somalis Flee to Kenya Camps - Tide of Misery - Crisis Continues TONY KARUMBA/AFP/Getty Images By Daniel Howden, Africa Correspondent 17 April 2009 As the world follows the escapades of the Somali pirates, Somali civilians are fleeing the anarchy on land, creating the world's biggest refugee camp in Kenya. Newly arrived Somali refugees gather at a registration centre at the Dadaab Camp in Kenya. SOMALI WOMEN & CHILDREN REFUGEES IN OVERCROWDED KENYA REFUGEE CAMPS - UNMET NEEDS, MANY RISKS, UNCERTAIN FUTURES. The lucky ones come with their families, others appear out of the thorn bushes, walking alone. Five hundred Somalis are now arriving at this bleak Kenyan outpost every day. They join a population of 267,000 and counting, in a facility built to shelter just 45,000. While the world has been captivated by the high seas drama of Somalia's pirates, this human tide has swollen the ranks of Dadaab, turning it into the world's largest refugee camp.

25 WUNRN By Abdi-Noor H. Mohamed Birth of a baby must be a blessing event But mine was nothing short of a curse Daddy's face didn't shine. Drums didn't make noise No shots were fired. No ceremony was held The new born was me. I am a girl In my culture, gender counts most. A girl is not as welcome as a baby boy Raising camel in the rangeland is family's highest priority They believe a girl has no hands for that Harsh combat against the enemies is family's highest priority They believe a girl has no heart for that Reconciliation in the aftermath of a clash is family's highest priority They believe a girl has no head for that At five I had to face the worst A knife cut across my genitals A midwife circumcised me Stitched me. Infibulated me Where I used to have a clit I have a black scar now Why inflict me with this pain? This real Pain of primitive cultures In tears I am, at every stage of my life Mom and Dad, I'm I not a daughter? Dear Brother, I'm I not a sister? Dear mankind, wherever you are I'm I not a human being? Tears, Tears, Tears FGM POEM FROM SOMALIA

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