History of Somalia: War and Famine

History of Somalia: War and Famine Last updated on Sunday 25th April 2010

Hussein Farah Aideed, succeeded his late father Mohamed Farah Aideed as leader of the Somali National Alliance. Fighting in Somalia continued, while aid workers left the country in fear of their lives.

Natural disasters in the form of flooding and famine hit Somalia in the end of 1997. The opposing factions met in Egypt and agreed to implement a peace process in the new year. Foreign aid agencies and humanitarian efforts on the ground were unable to operate efficiently due to the security risks to the personnel involved.

In August 1998, leaders of the main warring factions, Hussein Mohamed Aideed, Ali Mahdi Mohamed and Mohamed Qanyare Afrah, signed an agreement to set up a joint authority. Other key faction leaders disagreed with this agreement and the fighting continued. A conference of 300 northeastern leaders held in June at the Garowe district, elected Abdullah Yussuf Ahmed as President and Mohamed Abdi Hashi as Vice-President.

Tens of thousands of people died in the famine caused by the drought that hit the southern Somalia late that year. Floods and drought continue to cripple the country, while thousands of people attempt to find shelter in neighbouring countries.

A peace conference was held in April 2000 in Djibouti between the different Somali warring factions. Abdul Qasim Hasan Salat was appointed president to restore stability to the war-torn country. However, the pace of the peace process is still very slow.

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