FOCUS: SOMALIA - KAIT-Jonesboro, AR-News, weather, sports

FOCUS: SOMALIA

Background: A SIAD BARRE regime was ousted in January 1991; turmoil, factional fighting, and anarchy followed for nine years. In May of 1991, northern clans declared an independent Republic of Somaliland which now includes the administrative regions of Awdal, Woqooyi Galbeed, Togdheer, Sanaag, and Sool. Although not recognized by any government, this entity has maintained a stable existence, aided by the overwhelming dominance of the ruling clan and economic infrastructure left behind by British, Russian, and American military assistance programs. The regions of Bari and Nugaal comprise a neighboring self-declared Republic of Puntland, which has also made strides towards reconstructing legitimate, representative government. Beginning in 1993, a two-year UN humanitarian effort (primarily in the south) was able to alleviate famine conditions, but when the UN withdrew in 1995, having suffered significant casualties, order still had not been restored. A Transitional National Government (TNG) was created in October 2000 in Arta, Djibouti which was attended by a broad representation of Somali clans. The TNG has a three-year mandate to create a permanent national Somali government. The TNG does not recognize Somaliland or Puntland as independent republics but so far has been unable to reunite them with the unstable regions in the south; numerous warlords and factions are still fighting for control of Mogadishu and the other southern regions.
Background: A SIAD BARRE regime was ousted in January 1991; turmoil, factional fighting, and anarchy followed for nine years. In May of 1991, northern clans declared an independent Republic of Somaliland which now includes the administrative regions of Awdal, Woqooyi Galbeed, Togdheer, Sanaag, and Sool. Although not recognized by any government, this entity has maintained a stable existence, aided by the overwhelming dominance of the ruling clan and economic infrastructure left behind by British, Russian, and American military assistance programs. The regions of Bari and Nugaal comprise a neighboring self-declared Republic of Puntland, which has also made strides towards reconstructing legitimate, representative government. Beginning in 1993, a two-year UN humanitarian effort (primarily in the south) was able to alleviate famine conditions, but when the UN withdrew in 1995, having suffered significant casualties, order still had not been restored. A Transitional National Government (TNG) was created in October 2000 in Arta, Djibouti which was attended by a broad representation of Somali clans. The TNG has a three-year mandate to create a permanent national Somali government. The TNG does not recognize Somaliland or Puntland as independent republics but so far has been unable to reunite them with the unstable regions in the south; numerous warlords and factions are still fighting for control of Mogadishu and the other southern regions.
Somalia    Geography Top of Page
Location: Eastern Africa, bordering the Gulf of Aden and the Indian Ocean, east of Ethiopia
Geographic coordinates: 10 00 N, 49 00 E
Map references: Africa
Area: total:  637,657 sq km

land:  627,337 sq km

water:  10,320 sq km
Area - comparative: slightly smaller than Texas
Land boundaries: total:  2,366 km

border countries:  Djibouti 58 km, Ethiopia 1,626 km, Kenya 682 km
Coastline: 3,025 km
Maritime claims: territorial sea:  200 NM
Climate: principally desert; December to February - northeast monsoon, moderate temperatures in north and very hot in south; May to October - southwest monsoon, torrid in the north and hot in the south, irregular rainfall, hot and humid periods (tangambili) between monsoons
Terrain: mostly flat to undulating plateau rising to hills in north
Elevation extremes: lowest point:  Indian Ocean 0 m

highest point:  Shimbiris 2,416 m
Natural resources: uranium and largely unexploited reserves of iron ore, tin, gypsum, bauxite, copper, salt
Land use: arable land:  2%

permanent crops:  0%

permanent pastures:  69%

forests and woodland:  26%

other:  3% (1993 est.)
Irrigated land: 1,800 sq km (1993 est.)
Natural hazards: recurring droughts; frequent dust storms over eastern plains in summer; floods during rainy season
Environment - current issues: famine; use of contaminated water contributes to human health problems; deforestation; overgrazing; soil erosion; desertification
Environment - international agreements: party to:  Endangered Species, Law of the Sea

signed, but not ratified:  Marine Dumping, Nuclear Test Ban
Geography - note: strategic location on Horn of Africa along southern approaches to Bab el Mandeb and route through Red Sea and Suez Canal
Somalia    People Top of Page
Population: 7,488,773

note:  this estimate was derived from an official census taken in 1975 by the Somali Government; population counting in Somalia is complicated by the large number of nomads and by refugee movements in response to famine and clan warfare (July 2001 est.)
Age structure: 0-14 years:  44.54% (male 1,670,320; female 1,665,329)

15-64 years:  52.69% (male 1,993,750; female 1,952,437)

65 years and over:  2.77% (male 91,511; female 115,426) (2001 est.)
Population growth rate: 3.48% (2001 est.)
Birth rate: 47.23 births/1,000 population (2001 est.)
Death rate: 18.35 deaths/1,000 population (2001 est.)
Net migration rate: 5.96 migrant(s)/1,000 population (2001 est.)
Sex ratio: at birth:  1.03 male(s)/female

under 15 years:  1 male(s)/female

15-64 years:  1.02 male(s)/female

65 years and over:  0.79 male(s)/female

total population:  1.01 male(s)/female (2001 est.)
Infant mortality rate: 123.97 deaths/1,000 live births (2001 est.)
Life expectancy at birth: total population:  46.6 years

male:  44.99 years

female:  48.25 years (2001 est.)
Total fertility rate: 7.11 children born/woman (2001 est.)
HIV/AIDS - adult prevalence rate: NA%
HIV/AIDS - people living with HIV/AIDS: NA
HIV/AIDS - deaths: NA
Nationality: noun:  Somali(s)

adjective:  Somali
Ethnic groups: Somali 85%, Bantu, Arabs 30,000
Religions: Sunni Muslim
Languages: Somali (official), Arabic, Italian, English
Literacy: definition:  age 15 and over can read and write

total population:  24%

male:  36%

female:  14% (1990 est.)
Somalia    Government Top of Page
Country name: conventional long form:  none

conventional short form:  Somalia

former:  Somali Republic, Somali Democratic Republic
Government type: parliamentary
Capital: Mogadishu
Administrative divisions: 18 regions (plural - NA, singular - gobolka); Awdal, Bakool, Banaadir, Bari, Bay, Galguduud, Gedo, Hiiraan, Jubbada Dhexe, Jubbada Hoose, Mudug, Nugaal, Sanaag, Shabeellaha Dhexe, Shabeellaha Hoose, Sool, Togdheer, Woqooyi Galbeed
Independence: 1 July 1960 (from a merger of British Somaliland, which became independent from the UK on 26 June 1960, and Italian Somaliland, which became independent from the Italian-administered UN trusteeship on 1 July 1960, to form the Somali Republic)
National holiday: Foundation of the Somali Republic, 1 July (1960)
Constitution: 25 August 1979, presidential approval 23 September 1979

note:  the Transitional National Government formed in October 2000 has a mandate to create a new constitution and hold elections within three years
Legal system: NA
Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal
Executive branch: chief of state:  ABDIKASSIM Salad Hassan (since 26 August 2000); note - Interim President ABDIKASSIM was chosen for a three-year term by a 245-member National Assembly serving as a transitional government; the present political situation is still unstable, particularly in the south, with interclan fighting and random banditry

head of government:  ALI Khalifa Galaydh, appointed by the president 8 October 2000

cabinet:  appointed by the prime minister and sworn in on 20 October 2000

election results:  ABDIKASSIM Salad Hassan was elected president of an interim government at the Djibouti-sponsored Arta Peace Conference on 26 August 2000 by a broad representation of Somali clans that comprised a transitional National Assembly.
Legislative branch: unicameral People's Assembly or Golaha Shacbiga

note:  fledgling parliament; a transitional 245-member National Assembly began to meet on 13 August 2000 in the town of Arta, Djibouti and is now based in Mogadishu
Judicial branch: following the breakdown of national government, most regions have reverted to Islamic (Shari'a) law with a provision for appeal of all sentences
Political parties and leaders: none
Political pressure groups and leaders: numerous clan and subclan factions are currently vying for power
International organization participation: ACP, AfDB, AFESD, AL, AMF, CAEU, ECA, FAO, G-77, IBRD, ICAO, ICRM, IDA, IDB, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, ILO, IMF, IMO, Intelsat, Interpol, IOC, IOM (observer), ITU, NAM, OAU, OIC, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UPU, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTrO (observer)
Diplomatic representation in the US: Somalia does not have an embassy in the US (ceased operations on 8 May 1991)
Diplomatic representation from the US: the US does not have an embassy in Somalia; US interests are represented by the US Embassy in Nairobi at Moi Avenue and Haile Selassie Avenue; mail address: P. O. Box 30137, Unit 64100, Nairobi; APO AE 09831; telephone: [254] (2) 334141; FAX [254] (2) 340838
Flag description: light blue with a large white five-pointed star in the center; design based on the flag of the UN (Italian Somaliland was a UN trust territory)
Government - note: An interim Transitional National Government - with a president, prime minister, and 245-member National Assembly - was formed in October 2000. However, other governing bodies continue to exist and control various cities and regions of the country, including Somaliland, Puntland, and traditional clan and faction strongholds.
Somalia    Economy Top of Page
Economy - overview: One of the world's poorest and least developed countries, Somalia has few resources. Moreover, much of the economy has been devastated by the civil war. Agriculture is the most important sector, with livestock accounting for about 40% of GDP and about 65% of export earnings. Nomads and semi-nomads, who are dependent upon livestock for their livelihood, make up a large portion of the population. Livestock and bananas are the principal exports; sugar, sorghum, corn, fish, and qat are products for the domestic market. The small industrial sector, based on the processing of agricultural products, accounts for 10% of GDP; most facilities have been shut down because of the civil strife. Moreover, ongoing civil disturbances in Mogadishu and outlying areas have interfered with any substantial economic advance and with international aid arrangements. Due to the civil strife, economic data is susceptible to an exceptionally wide margin of error.
GDP: purchasing power parity - $4.3 billion (2000 est.)
GDP - real growth rate: NA%
GDP - per capita: purchasing power parity - $600 (2000 est.)
GDP - composition by sector: agriculture:  60%

industry:  10% (largely shut down in 2000)

services:  30% (2000 est.)
Population below poverty line: NA%
Household income or consumption by percentage share: lowest 10%:  NA%

highest 10%:  NA%
Inflation rate (consumer prices): over 100% (businesses print their own money) (2000 est.)
Labor force: 3.7 million (very few are skilled laborers) (1993 est.)
Labor force - by occupation: agriculture (mostly pastoral nomadism) 71%, industry and services 29%
Unemployment rate: NA%
Budget: revenues:  $NA

expenditures:  $NA, including capital expenditures of $NA
Industries: a few small industries, including sugar refining, textiles, petroleum refining (mostly shut down), wireless communication
Industrial production growth rate: NA%
Electricity - production: 260 million kWh (1999)
Electricity - production by source: fossil fuel:  100%

hydro:  0%

nuclear:  0%

other:  0% (1999)
Electricity - consumption: 241.8 million kWh (1999)
Electricity - exports: 0 kWh (1999)
Electricity - imports: 0 kWh (1999)
Agriculture - products: cattle, sheep, goats; bananas, sorghum, corn, sugarcane, mangoes, sesame seeds, beans; fish
Exports: $186 million (f.o.b., 1999 est.)
Exports - commodities: livestock, bananas, hides, fish (1999)
Exports - partners: Saudi Arabia 53%, Yemen 19%, UAE 14%, Italy 5%, Pakistan 2% (1999)
Imports: $314 million (f.o.b., 1999 est.)
Imports - commodities: manufactures, petroleum products, foodstuffs, construction materials (1995)
Imports - partners: Djibouti 24%, Kenya 14%, Brazil 13%, Saudi Arabia 10%, India 9% (1999)
Debt - external: $2.6 billion (1999 est.)
Economic aid - recipient: $191.5 million (1995)
Currency: Somali shilling (SOS)
Currency code: SOS
Exchange rates: Somali shillings per US dollar - 11,000 (November 2000), 2,620 (January 1999), 7,500 (November 1997 est.), 7,000 (January 1996 est.), 5,000 (1 January 1995), 2,616 (1 July 1993)

note:  the Republic of Somaliland, a self-declared independent country not recognized by any foreign government, issues its own currency, the Somaliland shilling
Fiscal year: NA
Somalia    Communications Top of Page
Telephones - main lines in use: NA
Telephones - mobile cellular: NA
Telephone system: general assessment:  the public telecommunications system was completely destroyed or dismantled by the civil war factions; all relief organizations depend on their own private systems

domestic:  recently, local cellular telephone systems have been established in Mogadishu and in several other population centers

international:  international connections are available from Mogadishu by satellite
Radio broadcast stations: AM 0, FM 0, shortwave 4 (1988)
Radios: 470,000 (1997)
Television broadcast stations: 1 (1997)
Televisions: 135,000 (1997)
Internet country code: .so
Internet Service Providers (ISPs): 1 (2000)
Internet users: 200 (2000)
Somalia    Transportation Top of Page
Railways: 0 km
Highways: total:  22,100 km

paved:  2,608 km

unpaved:  19,492 km (1996)
Waterways: none
Pipelines: crude oil 15 km
Ports and harbors: Bender Cassim (Boosaaso), Berbera, Chisimayu (Kismaayo), Merca, Mogadishu
Merchant marine: none (2000 est.)
Airports: 62 (2000 est.)
Airports - with paved runways: total:  5

over 3,047 m:  4

1,524 to 2,437 m:  1 (2000 est.)
Airports - with unpaved runways: total:  57

2,438 to 3,047 m:  4

1,524 to 2,437 m:  13

914 to 1,523 m:  29

under 914 m:  11 (2000 est.)
Somalia    Military Top of Page
Military branches: A Somali National Army is being reformed under the interim government; numerous factions and clans maintain independent militias, and the Somaliland and Puntland regional governments maintain their own security and police forces
Military manpower - availability: males age 15-49:  1,825,302 (2001 est.)
Military manpower - fit for military service: males age 15-49:  1,011,400 (2001 est.)
Military expenditures - dollar figure: $NA
Military expenditures - percent of GDP: NA%
Somalia    Transnational Issues Top of Page
Disputes - international: most of the southern half of the boundary with Ethiopia is a Provisional Administrative Line; territorial dispute with Ethiopia over the Ogaden

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