The argument, between the local Islamic court and a Somali clan, was over the control of a roadblock. Mogadishu has had no central government for the last twelve years and various clans control the city, using heavily armed guards. Any vehicle passing through the roadblock has to pay a toll to those who control the area.
According to SOS project director, Claudio Croce, most workers at the SOS Children's Village stayed at home during the fighting. The school was closed for the day and the hospital was fifty per cent operational. No one from the village was harmed, said Croce, who added that the fighting has now ceased and the situation has returned to normal.
SOS Children's Village Mogadishu has been in operation since 1985. The project encompasses a village, kindergarten, school, women and children's hospital and an emergency feeding programme.