Why Somalia’s Rape Crisis Spirals out of Control

MOGADISHU (Somaliguardian) – Over the past few months rape and sexual violence against women have been spiraling out of control in Somalia’s south and in particular, the capital Mogadishu – where many dreadful cases have been recorded.

More recently, rape crisis have begun to victimize not only women but also men and children. The new dreadful cases – strange to the Somali citizens – shocked and horrified many people.

Questions are, however, raised over why rape crimes are on the rise now and why the federal government fails to act to bring the perpetrators – who are still at large – to justice.

Somaliguardian has learned that the government of Norway and other members of Somalia’s international partners funded a project aimed to create rape crisis in the war-torn Horn of Africa nation to use it as a pretext for pressuring the Somali parliament to pass a new sexual offenses bill that was earlier signed by ousted Prime Minister Hassan Ali Khaire.

On May 28 2019, Somalia’s Minister of Women and Human Rights Development Deqa Yasin Haji travelled to Norway’s capital, Oslo where she had meeting with senior Norwegian government officials, in the course of which she urged both technical and financial support in introducing a new law legalizing same sex marriage in the Muslim majority nation.

Since then, the Somali federal government led by former Prime Minister Hassan Ali Khaire began the drafting of the sexual offenses law, part of which was written by non-Muslim foreign law experts including Norwegians and was later translated to Somali.

An official at the Somali Ministry of Women and Human Rights Development said as the drafting of the law was underway Minister Deqa Yasin Haji spoke to top Ministerial officials and openly stated her desire to ensure that Somalia becomes the most civilized African nation that shows tolerance for “people of different sexual orientations”.

“During a meeting with top Ministry officials including me, the Minister told us: ‘If this law comes into effect, one of my old dreams will come true that Somalia becomes the most civilized African nation which shows tolerance for people of different sexual orientations’,”

Speaking on the condition of anonymity, the official added that millions of US dollars in funds were allocated for the project  and that part of the money was spent on creating rape crisis in the country so that the law will be portrayed as seriously needed solution.

“To my knowledge, millions of US dollars in funds were earmarked for the project and more than half of the money was spent on creating rape crisis in the country so that ordinary citizens would be forced to believe such a law was seriously needed.”

The true nature of this story still needs further investigative undertaking but Somaliguardian team approached security and Criminal Investigation Department officials who confirmed that some of the rape cases they recorded showed signs that there may have been NGOs and other groups of interest who had set the plans.

In one such case, the investigation into the gang-rape and murder of Hamdi Mohamed Farah, a 19-year-old school graduate found evidence that there was good organization and funding behind the dreadful attack, said CID sources who would speak only on the condition of anonymity.

The horrific reality of the project behind Somalia’s current rape crisis only came to attention after parliament collectively rejected to approve government introduced sexual offenses bill. The incidents that followed the parliament’s decision early on August became a testament for the plots of foreign governments to diffuse traditions contrary to the tenets of Islam inside the Muslim majority nation.

Over 15 rape cases have been recorded since parliament rejected the legislative proposal. Nearly half of the victims of these attacks have been children and men. The traditionally strange attacks – mostly carried out by gunmen including security forces – highlighted the pretext of foreign governments bolstering the sexual offenses law that rape was not only happening to women and that the law was seriously needed to address such situations, with the aim of legalizing same sex marriage, said officials at the Ministry of Women and Human Rights Development.

Fear of rape is now an everyday fact of life for many women and girls in the capital Mogadishu – those who have survived spiraling number of sexual attacks have yet to receive justice and perpetrators of all the dreadful assaults still remain at large. And this was the end the foreign governments backing the Somali sexual offenses bill intended to achieve and it is so far unclear if the federal parliament will appease to their growing pressure and vote in the favor of those who pay their salaries – the donor nations.

Somali Deputy Speaker of Parliament Abdiwali Mudey earlier said that what he described as an “immoral law” was backed from elsewhere and would not be passed by the house.

Somali religious scholars have warned against the approval of the law, describing it as a foreign plot “aimed to stamp out Islamic tradition and as alternative, diffuse morally wrong traditions among the population”.

Contact us: info@somaliguardian.com

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