News / Africa

    Al-Shabab Radio Station Off the Air in Somali Capital

    Hassan Yusuf monitors a computer in the control room during a live broadcast of the Somali government run radio.  Al-Shabab controls most of southern Somalia uses the Internet and radio stations to get its message out, FILE March 1, 2010.Hassan Yusuf monitors a computer in the control room during a live broadcast of the Somali government run radio. Al-Shabab controls most of southern Somalia uses the Internet and radio stations to get its message out, FILE March 1, 2010.
    x
    Hassan Yusuf monitors a computer in the control room during a live broadcast of the Somali government run radio.  Al-Shabab controls most of southern Somalia uses the Internet and radio stations to get its message out, FILE March 1, 2010.
    Hassan Yusuf monitors a computer in the control room during a live broadcast of the Somali government run radio. Al-Shabab controls most of southern Somalia uses the Internet and radio stations to get its message out, FILE March 1, 2010.
    NAIROBI - For the first time in years, people living in and around Somalia's capital will be free from radio propaganda put out by militant group al-Shabab.  Radio Andalus, the pro-al-Shabab station which was broadcasting in the outskirts of Mogadishu, went off the air after African Union forces took control of the area Tuesday. 

    Abdiaziz Abdinur is a Somali freelance journalist based in Mogadishu.  He was a frequent listener of pro-al-Shabab Radio Andalus.

    For Abdinur, like other journalists who do not have access to the militant group's leaders or press conferences, listening to Radio Andalus was the only way to get al-Shabab's side of any story.

    Abdinur told VOA that the last time he heard the station broadcast was on Tuesday afternoon, when al-Shabab said it repelled an attack by the AU and Somali national army in the Daynile district, northwest of Mogadishu. "The last reports broadcast by Radio Andalus were the fighting which took place in Daynile district," he says, "where the government said it defeated al-Shabab. They have also broadcast a recorded interview by Abdikhadir Mumiin, one of al-Shabab's leaders, who is in Galgala Mountains," he said.

    Radio Andalus was stationed in the town of Elasha-Biyaha, one of the areas targeted in the AU-Somali government offensive.

    Elasha-Biyaha hosts hundreds of thousands of internally displaced Somalis who have fled from Mogadishu in recent years, trying to escape daily fighting between pro-government forces and al-Shabab.

    Since the operation began, thousands of people have fled back to Mogadishu to escape heavy fighting in the area.  On Thursday morning, government forces opened roads leading into the capital and allowed the IDPs to enter camps inside the city.

    Abdinur says the closure of Radio Andalus will have an impact on Mogadishu's population, who heavily depended on the radio to get information about areas that are still under the control of al-Shabab.

    "Media-wise, they were good in providing information in areas under their control,"  Abdinur says. "People depended on Radio Andalus to provide that information, since other media and journalists have no access in al-Shabab areas," Abdinur stated. 

    But Abdinur says the station's absence "also does give people in Mogadishu some sort of relief, since they won’t be listening to the group's propaganda, for example, an interview of someone who wants to go and blow himself up."

    Al-Shabab has steadily lost ground in recent months as a multi-national effort to crush the group gains momentum.  

    However, the group's ouster from Mogadishu has not restored full peace to the city.  On Thursday, four men armed with pistols shot and killed Radio Shabelle political programs producer Ahmed Adow Anshur in the city's Dharkanley district.

    You May Like

    Video Migrants Continue to Risk Lives Crossing US Border From Mexico

    In remote areas of the Sonoran Desert, which straddles the US-Mexico, thousands of migrants face arid desolation

    Video Recycling is Lifeline for Lebanon’s Last Glassblowers

    It's an ancient craft that stretches back millennia - but despite Lebanon’s trash crisis providing a lifeline, remaining glass blowers face an uncertain future

    Meet the Alleged Killer of Cambodia’s Kem Ley

    What little is known about former soldier, troublesome Buddhist monk and indebted gambler, raises more questions than answers

    By the Numbers

    Featured Videos

    Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
    London’s Financial Crown at Risk as Rivals Eye Brexit Opportunitiesi
    X
    VOA News
    July 25, 2016 5:09 PM
    By most measures, London rivals New York as the only true global financial center. But Britain’s vote to leave the European Union – so-called ‘Brexit’ – means the city could lose its right to sell services tariff-free across the bloc, risking its position as Europe’s financial headquarters. Already some banks have said they may shift operations to the mainland. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
    Video

    Video London’s Financial Crown at Risk as Rivals Eye Brexit Opportunities

    By most measures, London rivals New York as the only true global financial center. But Britain’s vote to leave the European Union – so-called ‘Brexit’ – means the city could lose its right to sell services tariff-free across the bloc, risking its position as Europe’s financial headquarters. Already some banks have said they may shift operations to the mainland. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
    Video

    Video Recycling Lifeline for Lebanon’s Last Glassblowers

    In a small Lebanese coastal town, one family is preserving a craft that stretches back millennia. The art of glass blowing was developed by Phoenicians in the region, and the Khalifehs say they are the only ones keeping the skill alive in Lebanon. But despite teaming up with an eco-entrepreneur and receiving an unexpected boost from the country’s recent trash crisis the future remains uncertain. John Owens reports from Sarafand.
    Video

    Video Migrants Continue to Risk Lives Crossing US Border from Mexico

    In his speech Thursday before the Republican National Convention, the party’s presidential candidate, Donald Trump, reiterated his proposal to build a wall along the U.S.-Mexico border if elected. Polls show a large percentage of Americans support better control of the nation's southwestern border, but as VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from the border town of Nogales in the Mexican state of Sonora, the situation faced by people trying to cross the border is already daunting.
    Video

    Video In State of Emergency, Turkey’s Erdogan Focuses on Spiritual Movement

    The state of emergency that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has declared is giving him even more power to expand a purge that has seen an estimated 60,000 people either arrested or suspended from their jobs. VOA Europe correspondent Luis Ramirez reports from Istanbul.
    Video

    Video Calm the Waters: US Doubles Down Diplomatic Efforts in ASEAN Meetings

    The United States is redoubling diplomatic efforts and looking to upcoming regional meetings to calm the waters after an international tribunal invalidated the legal basis of Beijing's extensive claims in the South China Sea. VOA State Department correspondent Nike Ching has the story.
    Video

    Video Four Brother Goats Arrive in Brooklyn on a Mission

    While it's unusual to see farm animals in cities, it's become familiar for residents of Brooklyn, New York, to see a little herd of goats. Unlike gas-powered mowing equipment, goats remove invasive weeds quietly and without adding more pollution to the air. As Faiza Elmasry tells us, this is a pilot program and if it proves to be successful, the goat gardener program will be extended to other areas of New York. Faith Lapidus narrates.
    Video

    Video Scientists in Poland Race to Save Honeybees

    Honeybees are in danger worldwide. Causes of what's known as colony collapse disorder range from pesticides and loss of habitat to infections. But scientists in Poland say they are on track to finding a cure for one of the diseases. VOA’s George Putic reports.
    Video

    Video Wall Already Runs Along Parts of US-Mexico Border

    The Republican Party’s presidential nominee, Donald Trump, gained the support of many voters by saying he would build a wall to keep undocumented immigrants and drugs from coming across the border from Mexico. Critics have called his idea impractical and offensive to Mexico, while supporters say such a bold approach is needed to control the border. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from the border town of Nogales, Arizona.
    Video

    Video New HIV Tests Emphasize Rapid Results

    As the global fight against AIDS intensifies, activists have placed increasing importance on getting people to know their HIV status. Some companies are developing new HIV testing methods designed to be quick, easy and accurate. Thuso Khumalo looks at the latest methods, presented at the International AIDS conference in Durban, South Africa.
    Video

    Video African Youth with HIV Urge More Support

    HIV, the virus that causes AIDS, is the top killer of teens in sub-Saharan Africa. But many youths say their experience with the virus is unique and needs to be addressed differently than the adult epidemic. VOA South African Correspondent Anita Powell reports.
    Video

    Video Pop-Up Art Comes to Your Living Room, Backyard and Elsewhere

    Around the world, independent artists and musicians wrestle with a common problem: where to exhibit or perform? Traditional spaces such as museums and galleries are reserved for bigger names, and renting a space is not feasible for many. Enter ArtsUp, which connects artists with venue owners. Whether it’s a living room, restaurant, office or even a boat, pop-up events are bringing music and art to unexpected places. Tina Trinh has more.
    Video

    Video Scotland’s Booming Whisky Industry Fears Brexit Hangover

    After Britain’s vote to leave the European Union, Scotland’s government wants to break away from the United Kingdom – fearing the nation’s exports are at risk. Among the biggest of these is whisky. Henry Ridgwell reports on a time of turmoil for those involved in the ancient art of distilling Scotland’s most famous product.

    Special Report

    Adrift The Invisible African Diaspora