17/11/06 (B369) BBC : on tue des jeunes manifestants, en Somalie, parce qu’ils protestent contre les restrictions sur la consommation de Khat …(Info lectrice)


Somali khat protester shot dead

Islamist fighters in Somalia’s capital, Mogadishu, shot at a crowd angered
at shortages of the mild narcotic khat, killing one person, say eyewitnesses.

Khat vendors
were protesting about loss of revenue since a ban on Kenyan flights to Somalia
on Monday, that has led to a shortage of imported khat.

The Islamists
have subsequently burned two big khat consignments which were flown in from
elsewhere this week.

The Islamic
courts have tried to outlaw khat since they rose to power in June.

The Union
of Islamic Courts (UIC) that now rules the capital says khat encourages immorality.

Most khat,
chewed by many Somali men – especially the gunmen who have fought for control
of the country for the last 15 years – was flown in from neighbouring Kenya.

banned all flights to Somalia, citing security fears.

were six flights a week from Nairobi to Mogadishu and services to three other
towns and many more khat flights each day.


The khat
protesters were burning tyres and throwing stones before shots were fired.

I saw
an injured man lying on the ground, he was bleeding profusely
Mogadishu resident Ali Suleiman

were demonstrating… [when] they opened fire on us," protester Nur Aden
Wajishe told AFP news agency.

eyewitnesses described seeing a person die of bullet wounds and several others
injured in the shooting.

13-year-old boy was killed," resident Ali Suleiman told Reuters news

saw an injured man lying on the ground, he was bleeding profusely," he

The BBC’s
Hassan Barise in Mogadishu says a dusk-to-dawn curfew has been imposed on
the city.

The consignment
of khat burned on Tuesday at an airport 50km south of Mogadishu was estimated
to be worth $40,000 and to have originated from Ethiopia, local media reports.

shipment was incinerated because it landed at Mogadishu’s main airport where
khat imports are not allowed, officials say.


The Islamists
have taken control of most of southern Somalia since seizing the capital in

Many Mogadishu
residents have welcomed their rule as they have brought law and order to the
city after years of anarchy.

Khat has
not been officially banned in the capital as it has by Islamist hardliners
in Kismayo, south of Mogadishu.

But according
to the Union of Islamic Courts’ website, Kenya’s flight ban has seen mosque
attendance rise at prayer times.

In some
parts of the country, Islamists have been closing public cinemas and, according
to some residents, enforcing strict dress codes.

are fears of a regional conflict starting in Somalia, as Ethiopia backs the
weak interim government based in the city of Baidoa and its rival Eritrea
is accused of arming the Islamists.