IRB – Immigration and Refugee Board of Canada (Author)
In a 19 August 1997 telephone interview
with the DIRB, a researcher at the US Institute for Peace who
specializes in Somali history and politics, stated that members of
Siad Barre's immediate family likely would not be welcome in
Gabbaharre.. The researcher stated that Gedo region is currently in
a state of war, with the Marehan in this area divided between those
who support the Islamic fundamentalist group Al Ittihad,
and those opposed to it (ibid.). He explained that the anti-Al
Ittihad faction is supported by Ethiopia, which has made
military incursions into Gedo region (ibid.). He further stated
that the Marehan have attempted to take control of Kismayu but were
repulsed by militias loyal to General Morgan, a Majertein married
to the late Siad Barre's daughter (ibid.). He stated that there is
fighting between the Majertein and the Marehan and the fact that
Siad Barre's daugher is married to General Morgan does not exempt
Siad Barre's immediate family members from harassment. He explained
that if the interests of the Marjetein conflict with those of the
Marehan, the former will prevail because Somali custom dictates
that "a man's clan is more important than that of his
The May-June 1997 issue of Horn of
Africa Bulletin corroborates the information on fighting
between the Marehan and the Majertein, and on Ethiopia's support
for the anti-Al Ittihad faction of the Marehan.. According
to a report in Horn of Africa Bulletin, the southern port
of Kismayu was attacked by people "from the Marehan clan of former
dictator Mohamed Siad Barre" (ibid., 20). This source further
states that the attack was linked to "a long-standing feud between
the Majertein clan militia and the Marehan" (ibid.). For detailed
information on this topic, please consult the attached documents
and Response to Information Request SOM26182.E of 3 April 1997,
available at Regional Documentation Centres.
Information on whether other members of
Siad Barre's family are currently living in Gedo region could not
be found among the sources currently available to the DIRB.
This Response was prepared after
researching publicly accessible information currently available to
the DIRB within time constraints. This Response is not, and does
not purport to be, conclusive as to the merit of any particular
claim to refugee status or asylum. Please find below the list of
additional sources consulted in researching this information
Horn of Africa Bulletin
[Uppsala]. May-June 1997. Vol. 9, No. 3. "Fighting in Kismayo."
Researcher specializing in Somali
history and politics, US Institute for Peace, Washington, DC. 19
August 1997. Telephone interview.
Horn of Africa Bulletin
[Uppsala]. May-June 1997. Vol. 9, No. 3. "Fighting in Kismayo," p.
_____. May-June 1997. Vol. 9, No. 3.
"Ethiopian Troops Said to Seize Somali Islamic Base," p. 12.
Additional Sources Consulted
Africa Confidential [London].
Africa Research Bulletin: Political,
Social and Cultural Series [London]. Monthly.
Country Reports on Human Rights
Practices for 1996. 1997.
The Europa World Year Book
1996. 1996. 37th ed. Vol. 2. London: Europa Publications.
Foreign Broadcast Information Service
(FBIS) Daily Reports. 1996.
Human Rights Watch World
Report. 1996, 1997.
Keesing's Record of World
Events [Cambridge]. 1996-1997.
New African [London].
On-line search on NEXIS database.