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The East African : Oct 31st 2015
12 The EastAfrican NEWS OCTOBER 31 - NOVEMBER 6, 2015 Igad sounds ala≥m ove≥ human t≥a∞cking as citizens flee ha≥sh conditions By FRED OLUOCH Special Correspondent COUNTRIES IN East Africa and the Horn need to develop joint policy and legal strategies to tackle the increasing human trafficking within and outside the region. Lack of a joint strategy has seen the region emerge as a major target for international human traffickers, who lure their victims with the promise of opportunities that will pull them out of poverty. The victims end up in forced or slave labour in agriculture, mining, domestic work, and prostitution outside the region. A two-day consultative meeting of the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (Igad) partner states held in Djibouti from October 28 to 29, called for close co-operation among countries by introducing stricter regulations targeting private job recruitment agencies and recognition of trafficking as a cross-border and internal crime. The programme manager in charge of health and social services at the Igad Secretariat, Fathia Alwan, pointed out that inter-state co-operation in the region remains weak in the fight against trafficking in persons. “We need more co-operation both at the bilateral level and also the multilateral level between coun- tries of origin, transit and destination,” she said. On the continent, South Africa is a leading destination for trafficked persons, mostly Somalis and Ethiopians.Other key routes include the Northern Route through Sudan, Libya and Egypt into Europe, the Eastern Route through Djibouti, northern Somalia, Yemen and eventually to Gulf countries, and the Southern Route: Through Kenya, Tanzania, Zambia, Malawi and ROOTING OUT REBELS Three EA states going to war — in Yemen! The count≥ies have eithe≥ cont≥ibuted t≥oops o≥ opened ai≥space fo≥ Saudi A≥abian fighte≥s By KEVIN J KELLEY Special Correspondent A t least three East African nations — Eritrea, Soma- lia and Sudan — are reported to be directly involved in the war raging in Yemen, a country a short distance from the Horn of Africa. Sudan recently acknowl- edged that it has dispatched a battalion of troops to Yemen to join a Saudi Arabia-led coalition fighting the al-Houthi rebel group. “Our troops in Yemen are DOCTOR OF BUSINESS ADMINISTRATION DEGREE PROGRAMME Applications are invited for admission into the ESAMI and UNIES/StatMind Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) degree programme starting on 30th November 2015 at ESAMI headquarters in Arusha, Tanzania. • Structure of the Degree Programme – The applied and practice oriented three to four year degree programme is made up of three parts; i. Course work, ii. Research proposal development and defence and iii. 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The UN team also said it has received unconfirmed reports that 400 Eritrean soldiers are embedded with the UAE contingent battling the Houthis. Similarly, Somalia’s govern- ment is allowing its air space, land and territorial waters to be used by the anti-Houthi coalition. Foreign Minister Abdisalam Omer Hadliye told the BBC’s Somali Service in April that “Somalia shares the same crisis as existing in Yemen and we cannot watch what is going on there. Houthis are trying to topple a legal government so it is the responsibility of the Arabs to protect, and Somalia is playing its role to that end.” Although far from the frontlines, Senegal has also intervened in Yemen on the side of the Saudi-led coalition. Djibouti President Ismail Omar Guelleh. Picture: File The GCC interested in the Eritrea-controlled Hanish Islands in the Gulf of Aden situated close to a Yemeni port occupied by the Houthis. the UAE has leased the Eritrean port of Assab for a 30-year period. RETURNING FAVOUR: Eritrea had received compensation, including monetary compensation and fuel supplies The West African country has sent 2,100 soldiers to assist in the fight against the Houthis. In addition, two North African countries — Egypt and Morocco — have intervened militarily in Yemen against the Houthis. Djibouti may likewise be aiding the coalition that is officially under the command of the six-nation Gulf Co-operation Council (GCC) and that is receiving support from the United States. Djibouti President Ismail Omar Guelleh said in a recent interview with Arab News that he has expressed “our firm support to the legitimate government against the coup carried out by the al-Houthi militia.” The Sunni branch of Islam predominates in Djibouti, Senegal, Somalia and Sudan, which is also the case in the GCC countries and SUPPORT with the Yemen government leadership displaced by the Houthis. The Yemeni insurgents practice the Shia form of Islam and are said to be allied with Iran, a Shi’iteled country competing with Saudi Arabia for influence in the Gulf. The predominantly Sunni East African countries may thus be seen as acting out of sectarian solidarity with the Saudis and the other GCC member-states: Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar and the Emirates. Somalia and Djibouti have also both been directly affected by the fighting in a country that is less than 50 kilometres across the Gulf of Aden. According to the UN human refugee agency, a total of 15,000 refugees have made perilous sea voyages to the two East African states in order to escape the violence in Yemen so far this year. Somalia’s involvement may also be linked to military aid it has been given by the UAE. The Emirates foreign min- ister visited Somalia in June for a meeting with President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud, and a few days later a shipment of armoured vehicles and other military equipment arrived in Mogadishu from the UAE. Received assistance Sudan has also received as- sistance from GCC countries that may amount to a reward for its willingness to intervene in Yemen. Sudan said in August that it had received a $1 billion deposit from Saudi Arabia. That followed an announcement in April that Qatar was making a $1 billion deposit in Sudan’s central bank. The UN Monitoring Group suggested that the Saudis and UAE “may be offering Eritrea compensation for allowing its territory and possibly its troops to be used as part of the Arab coalition-led war effort.” South Africa. Caroline Njuki, the regional mi- gration co-ordinator at the Igad Secretariat, noted that human trafficking is on the rise because more people desire to move and seek better lives due to unemployment, wars and repressive regimes. “Coupled with cartels of traffick- ers that seek to exploit their trend, this challenge has made trafficking of human beings a sad reality of our time,” said Ms Njuki.
Oct 24th 2015
Nov 7th 2015