UN calls for 'safety zones' across Somalia
According to the United Nations, the constant battles taking place in Mogadishu between both Islamist insurgents and the Ethiopian-assisted government forces has created the worst humanitarian crisis in Africa.
“We have reports of both parties recruiting child soldiers,” Christian Balslev-Olesen of Unicef said to BBC.
Insecurity to the region had cut off food, clean water, and medical assistance.
As a result, the UN children’s fund is calling forth for the creation of safe zones for Somali children displaced as a result of the conflict. Ann Veneman of Unicef explained that the children were malnourished but were also at a high risk of disease. Asides from that, she said the children were suffering from both exhaustion and emotional trauma.
Amongst the latest casualties as a result of the shelling were a mother and her three children.
Unicef adds that the children in need of humanitarian assistance are scatted throughout the country. Most of them are mainly in the central south and close to Mogadishu.
The Ethiopian wants to withdraw from the country. But they will only do so when peacekeepers come in to replace them. An 8,000 strong force is set to be deployed. However, only 1,600 peacekeepers from Uganda have been sent to the country.
Ever since 1991, the country has had no functioning government.
Tags: Somalia , Mogadishu , Children
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