Al-Shabaab abandons charcoal business, opts for racketeering


The murderous bloodlust group al-Shabaab has decided to abandon its reliance on the illegal charcoal trade in favour of its mafia style taxation after it devastated Somalia’s forests and water catchment areas.

The group’s terrorist activities may have lost momentum apparently caused by loss of territory and all means of revenue, resorting to plundering starving villages of cash and extorting money from local businesses and livestock from local herders from the handful of villages it still controls.

Recent efforts by the federal government in Mogadishu and partners, to seal off illegal trade routes for charcoal trade have forced the militants to opt for other “taxations”.
The group has been weakened financially and militarily and has opted to extort money from locals. Defectors have revealed crippling extortion by the terror group and brainwashing of boys, as it suffers apparent crisis of morale.

But locals in villages under al-Shabaab’s rule are tired of the illegal taxes and are fighting back. The number of armed groups, largely made up of livestock herders that are opposed to the illegal taxations, has exponentially increased in recent months, with raids made by those groups on al-Shabaab becoming a daily occurrence.

Al-Shabaab members killed, livestock recovered in military operation

Several Al-Shabaab members were recently killed in Gedo region in an ongoing military operation across the country to decimate the blood-lust group. In a military operation in Raydab, Gedo region that is part of efforts to destroy al-Shabaab, SNA has killed several Shabaab members. 

SNA 49th Battalion commander, Major Ali Mohamed Hassan, told reporters Somali National Army has liberated the town from the shackles of al-Shabaab and that the operation will continue.

The operation also recovered several livestock al-Shabaab previously forced herders to surrender weakening the group financially.

Al-Shabaab leader admits to using children as shield and suicide bombers

Yusuf Kabo ku tukade, a high ranking al-Shabaab leader, has recently boasted how the group uses children in its operations and suicide bombing missions describing them as shields.

He revealed and admitted how children as young as 8 are part of the murderous group’s infantry and how one of his children are among them. Many dismissed the latter for its uncommon for leaders to have their own children as fighters for obvious reasons.

“My own son, whom I had while being a member of al-Shabaab, is currently at the forefront of the fight. Our own children are enough for us to win. All of us have four wives,” he told a group of al-Shabaab members.

Yusuf compared Somali women to chicken saying they give birth to children the way chicken lay eggs. “Each one of us has four wives and they are giving birth night and day the way chicken are laying eggs night and day,” he partly said disrespecting the Somali women.

Most of the women Yusuf Kabo Ku Tukade is talking about are young girls forced to marry al-Shabaab members while underage often without the approval of their parents; a clear manifestation of the group's hypocrisy. 

There are thousands of Somali boys and girls who have been imprisoned in unknown locations later to be used as suicide bombers for boys and forceful marriages to Al-Shabaab members for girls.
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