Thursday, December 28, 2006

Somalia-Ethhiopia conflict further destabliizes Africa

Africa already has enough problems with Darfur and conflict in many other regions from Nigeria to the Congo. Now with Ethiopia supporting the interim Somalia government in its fight against the Islamic court militias, further regional destablization is feared.

Ethiopia already has its own problems with the derailed Ethiopia-Eritrea peace process. Eritrea supports the Islamic courts in Somalia. Clearly though, the Ethiopian military can easily handle the court militias on the open battlefield.

Most believe, though, that Ethiopia and the Somalia government will not be able to completely squash the militias and protracted low-intensity conflict is likely to ensue. The court militias have already hinted that attacks within Ethiopia are possible.

Transitional Federal Government soldiers on their truck in Bur Haqaba, 60 kilometers (37 miles) south of Baidoa, Somalia Thursday, Dec 28, 2006. Residents living south of Mogadishu said they saw convoys of Islamists driving south toward the port city of Kismayo. In Mogadishu, gunfire echoed through the streets and hundreds of gunmen, who just hours earlier fought for Quranic rule, took off their Islamic uniforms and submitted to the command of clan elders, an AP reporter in Mogadishu said. Some clan militiamen began looting Islamic courts' bases and buildings belonging to Islamic courts officials, witnesses said. (AP Photo/Guy Calaf/pool)
Transitional Federal Government soldiers on their truck in Bur Haqaba, south of Baidoa, Somalia Thursday, Dec 28, 2006. The interim government backed by Ethiopian support is rolling back Sharia court militia forces. AP Photo/Guy Calaf/pool via Yahoo News.

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