January 26 2009

Situation in Mogadishu improves

26/01/2009 - Within the past days, the security situation in Mogadishu, in particular the area where the SOS facilities are located is changing rapidly.

Photo: SOS Archives
For more than a year now, all children and mothers have been living in safer parts of Mogadishu - Photo: SOS Archives 

Ahmed Ibrahim, director of SOS Children's Villages Somalia, comments that the Ethiopians have withdrawn from the project area and there is no real insecurity at present. "This is a very promising development. With the Ethiopian troops out of our project area, we are hopeful that peace will sort of prevail and we can consider re-opening both the SOS Children's Village and the school within the next few weeks after a one-year exile in other parts of the town."

However, it must also be noted that the political situation in the country remains as fluid as ever, and it is not clear where all of this will lead. Uncertainty prevails, and that serves to remind us that anything can still happen and that we must remain constantly alert and cautious about the future of our children. For that reason SOS Children's Villages keeps on monitoring and evaluating the situation on a daily basis and regularly update the emergency evacuation plan so that in the worst scenario "we have a safety valve in place and can react fast in any situation to keep our families safe", said Ahmed Ibrahim.

Photo: SOS Archives
Space for playing was very limited under these circumstances - Photo: SOS-Archives

Despite the physical absence of international staff from the projects over a period of almost one year, the local management and co-ordination team have done an extraordinary job in maintaining contact with the children, supporting the mothers and continue operating the clinic. This in itself is a huge achievement and success story.

For further information about the situation around SOS Children's Villages in Somalia, please search for news from 2007/2008.