House of Lords written question – answered on 1st April 2008.

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Photo of Baroness Northover Baroness Northover Spokesperson in the Lords, International Development, Liberal Democrat Lords Spokesperson (International Development)

asked Her Majesty's Government:

What assessment they have made of the seizure of the town of Jowhar in Somalia by Islamist fighters.

Photo of Lord Malloch-Brown Lord Malloch-Brown Minister of State, Foreign & Commonwealth Office, Minister of State (Africa, Asia and the UN)

Jowhar was raided by a group of anti-government Somali insurgents, the Shabab, on 26 March 2008. The Shabab entered the town, released prisoners from the jail and then withdrew. The Shabab have been reported to have carried out similar raids in other towns. Unverified reports from the area indicate that seven people died in the fighting.

We strongly condemn the use of such force and call on all Somalis to renounce violence and commit to a peaceful political process of dialogue, reconciliation and nation-building.

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