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Vol 38 No 2

Published 17th January 1997


Itahad international

Al Itahad al Islami, Somalia's main Islamist organisation, says that it intends to become a political party, to the unease of the National Executive Council. NEC members have said privately, though, that they will try to negotiate with Al Itahad, despite its Islamist policies. Ethiopia's August and December incursions into Somalia's Gedo region, in an attempt to crush Itahad, embarrass the NEC. As we went to press, Ethiopian troops still held Dolo and an area some ten kilometres across the border but had not defeated Itahad nor enabled Addis Ababa's ally, the Somali National Front (Marehan) under General Omar Haji Masale, to establish control of the region.

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