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Somalia Militia Bans 16 Aid Groups Over ‘Illicit’ Activities

Somalia’s al-Shabaab militia banned 16 aid agencies including the United Nations Children’s Fund and the World Health Organization, after accusing them of alleged “illicit activities and misconduct.”

The al-Qaeda-linked rebel group’s Office for Supervising the Affairs of Foreign Agencies said some of the banned groups had worked with churches to convert young, Muslim Somalis to Christianity, according to a statement posted on the website which has previously published statements by al-Shabaab.

“Any organisation found to be supporting or actively engaged in activities deemed detrimental to the attainment of an Islamic state or performing duties other than that which it formally proclaims will be banned immediately without prior warning,” it said.

It listed the banned agencies as follows:

Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees
World Health Organisation
United Nations Children’s Fund
United Nations Population Fund
United Nations Office for Project Services
Food Security and Nutrition Analysis Unit
Norwegian Refugee Council
Danish Refugee Council
Norwegian Church Aid
Cooperazione Internazionale
Swedish African Welfare Alliance
German Agency for Technical Cooperation
Action Contre la Faim

To contact the reporter on this story: Hamsa Omar in Mogadishu via Nairobi at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Paul Richardson at

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