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Somalia, 26 January 2018: Profiles of children and women affected by the forced eviction from camps

By Hassan Istila

The following stories are based on interviews gathered by Hassan Istiila, a Mogadishu-based freelance journalist and UNICEF Voices of Youth Blogging Intern. On 4 January, Hassan visited some of the children and families affected by the recent forced eviction, which has left destruction in a score of IDP camps in KM13, Kahda District.

I came to an IDP camp called Al-Aamin in KM13 where about 100 families just moved in. I saw hungry children, distressed parents, who don’t have a decent place to sleep and almost nothing to eat. At the new camp, they are getting health services from a UNICEF NGO partners, SOYDA, but they need much more support – food, shelter and school for the children.

This is Ibrahim Ahmed, 12, and his younger brother

“My mother wasn’t at home and I was at school. One of my friends rushed over to tell me that our camp was being destroyed by bulldozer, there were a lot of soldiers, and my little brother was crying. I ran back home, tried to look for my mother, but before I could find her, our home was already destroyed. I was studying at Moalim Abdirizak School – social science, mathematics English and other subjects, but now I don’t have a school. My education is stopped.”

Ibrahim Ahmed and his siblings. They are among the families affected by the forced eviction.

Fadumo Hussien Hajji is a mother of three

“I wasn’t at the camp when they destroyed our home. My children were terrified by the bulldozer and the soldiers. Thank God no one was hurt. We didn’t have time to take any food. Now we don’t have anything to eat, nothing to sleep on, and no help.”

Khadiijo Aada Hassan, 13, her mother and younger brothers

This is what she told me: “Ten soldiers with bulldozer came to our camp and immediately started to destroy things. My parents weren’t at home at that time, my father went to Baidoa and mother was looking for food at the market. I was at class 4 at Moalim Abdiweli School, but soldiers destroyed it also the health centres. Since I came here I don’t get to go to school any more, and I lost touch with my classmates.”

Nuurto Idow Issac, is a mother of six

“I'm originally from lower Shabelle. I fled to Mogadishu because of fighting and drought. And now I am fleeing again – my life was destroyed without notice. God help us! My children and I will be sleeping in the open tonight, just like last night. My children were cold.”

Young father, Hussein Hassan Mire

Hussein with his wife Anabeey Abiikar Kuulowand and their children, is visibly shaken by what had happened. They came from “Daryeel” camp, one of the many small camps in a large compound that was destroyed by force and out of the blue.

“No warning was given. Bulldozer and soldiers came and started destroying our shelters. We couldn’t collect our belongings, and had to run for our lives. 

The families here share with us small meals but not enough. We have been in this condition for the past four days without assistance except health.”

Batulo Adam Osman came here with her mother and her eight children

Her baby has been sick for days. “This eviction and destruction is causing great stress on our lives. We don’t have food, shelter, water and toilets, everything was gone under the bulldozer. We don’t have any care here except health. Our children don’t have schools, we don’t have a place to live. We ask our brothers and sisters to support with us with whatever they can.”



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