Kenya’s Military Imposes Blockade on Key Cities in Somalia’s Gedo Region


MOGADISHU (Somaliguardian) – Kenya’s military has imposed blockade on a number of cities in southern Somalia’s Gedo region and “has not yet stopped atrocities it commits in the region”, Somali army spokesman for the restive region Adan Ahmed Hersi (Adan Rufle) said on Wednesday.

“I want to inform the Somali public … that Kenya has not yet stopped atrocities it commits in Gedo region,” the spokesman told media.

The remarks come after Kenya announced this week it had reopened its air space to flights from Somalia following resumption of diplomatic relations between the two countries.

Kenyan troops in the towns of Baardere, Buurdubo and Luq block vehicles carrying food and other essential items from the capital to reach other cities in the region, including Balad-Hawo and Garbaharey, according to the military official.

The move has caused an increase in food prices in many cities in the region where 1kg of sugar is sold at more than $5 and has necessitated residents to flee to other parts of the region.

“It is noteworthy that in villages around Bardere, El-Wak, Garbaharey, Balad Hawo and Diif there is no where with white tin-roofed home to shelter” Somali army spokesman for Gedo region said.

“People flee homes at 4pm [every day], women give birth under the shade of trees and people spend time in the bush throughout the night enduring bites of mosquitoes and other sufferings. Kenyan warplanes hover over residential areas every night.”

The official added that telecommunication lines have been cut after Kenyan air strikes destroyed headquarters belonging to Hormuud and Somtel companies, increasing pressure on locals and “more over [residents’] lives are in danger and everyone fears if the air strikes would hit them”.

The allegations come after Somalia’s federal government sent complaint on Kenyan air strikes targeting civilians in the region to the United Nations Security Council.

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