Somalia Releases Singer Who Confessed to Al-Shabaab Membership


MOGADISHU (Somaliguardian) – Somalia’s security forces have released a singer who earlier confessed that he had been working for the militant group Al-Shabaab, in a video recorded by the national intelligence services.

In the video posted on the Somali intelligence agency’s twitter page in January 2020, Abshir Garane, said he had joined Al-Shabaab in 2013 and had been involved in the group’s tax collection activities in the capital Mogadishu.

The Al-Qaeda-affiliate later denied the claim, saying the man was not a member of its fighters.

There were reports at the time that the young singer had been arrested amid internal-wrangling among Banadir regional officials and had confessed under duress.

His mother said her son was not linked to the militants and had been severely tortured before confessing.

Abshir, freed several weeks ago, was seen walking free in the capital a few days ago, according to Caasimada Online website, which quotes sources as saying that clan elders related to the current acting president Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo pushed for his release.

The outgoing president ordered the young man’s release from jail and he had not been brought before a military court, where suspected militants are often trialed.

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