Yesterday marked the 50th anniversary of Somalia’s independence, but there is little to celebrate.
Al-Shabab, which means The Youth, emerged from this bleak chaos in 2006. Human Rights
Watch says Somalis living under Al-Shabab control are subjected to grinding repression. The
impact of the conflict is felt in Canada, home to between 150,000 and 200,000 ethnic Somalis.
While extremist Islam has little appeal to most Somali-Canadians, some support Al-Shabab.
But Ahmed Hussen, president of the Canadian Somali Congress, said while there was
once “quiet support” for Al-Shabab, that has evaporated due to the group’s conduct in Somalia
and the news reports, that young Canadians had been recruited.

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