MOGADISHU (Somaliguardian) – A group of Somali lawyers based in Australia made its first submission of evidence of alleged war crimes committed by Somalia’s authorities to the International Criminal Court, its founder Yusuf Abdi Farah said on Saturday.
The lawyers are trying to speed up an ICC inquiry into abuses committed during the term of the outgoing president Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo, including the murder of a female spy Ikran Tahlil, whose disappearance triggered a public outrage and tensions between the Horn of Africa country’s most powerful leaders.
The cases of recruits taken to Eritrea, who were later used as cannon fodder in the conflict in Ethiopia’s Tigray region and civilians killed in the town of Baidoa in 2018 in an attempt to bring the current Southwest regional leader to power by force were among dossiers submitted to the Hague Court, Yusuf said in an interview with Universal TV.
The move may lead Somali president Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo in a quandary since he must decide to cooperate with an ICC investigation or find himself isolated. He had earlier tried to block the prime minister from pursuing a probe into the killing of Ikran Tahlil, whose family urged him not to politicize push for justice in her case.
A committee named to probe the alleged deployment of Somali recruits in Ethiopia’s Tigray war had ceased working after the Somali National Intelligence and Security Agency (NISA) resisted to cooperate. read more
The United Nations and the United States both confirmed that Somali troops moved from Eritrean training camps were fighting alongside allied Ethiopian, Eritrean and Amhara forces during war against Tigrayan rebels. read more
Yusuf noted that a restriction imposed by the government of Somali president Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo on travel to and from the coastal town of Kismayo was also part of the documents sent to the ICC and added that they will pursue justice for hundreds of civilians who had faced abuses under the current acting president’s administration.
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