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Somalia uncertainties taking new twist

By September 22, 2010

Somalia (MNN) — Somalia's Prime Minister resigned Tuesday
because of political rivalries and the trouble across the
country.

Todd Nettleton with Voice of the Martyrs explains: "The
hope is that if there is not political turmoil within the government, they
will have more time and attention to focus on the al-Shabaab radical Muslim
rebels who are fighting for control of the country."

However, it may be too little, too late. Al-Shabaab rebels control much of southern
Somalia and most of the capital. The government has little remaining
influence within Mogadishu and is overpowered outside of the capital city.

The feud over a new
draft constitution divided the
parliament. A no-confidence vote was
scheduled and postponed against the Prime Minister, who ended the conflict by
stepping down. In spite of the drama
surrounding the move, Nettleton observes that while it's an interesting
development, it won't make a significant difference in the lives of the average
Somali citizen.

Meanwhile, the
insurgents have been ramping up their march toward an Islamic state. The group has made plain their goal of
eradicating Christians. There's been a
chilling new development in that campaign. 

Earlier this month, another member of an underground Christian
movement in Somalia was murdered, but this case was a little different from the
others. Nettleton confirms the Compass
Direct News story. On July 21, "A man
named Osman Abdullah Fataho was shot and killed by al-Shabaab rebels in front of
his wife and children. Then, the wife and children were abducted by the
rebels."  

It's believed the insurgents targeted Fataho because he had
left Islam. Because he was a long-time
Christian deeply involved in the activities of the small, secret Christian
community, the rebels took the family. Nettleton goes on to say, "The wife was subsequently released, but
they held onto the children to train them up to be al-Shabaab rebels."

Abducted were 5-year-old Ali
Daud Fataho, 7-year-old Fatuma Safia Fataho, 10-year-old Sharif Ahmed
Fataho, and Nur Said Fataho, 15. 

Training insurgents from the ranks of the most vulnerable kidnapped
Christians is a fairly new tactic. The
fear it inspires can be crippling. Nettleton urges prayer to support the believers in this region. 

Specifically, pray that "in spite of the efforts of the rebels who are trying to deprogram them
from Christianity and indoctrinate them in Islam, that they will hold firm in
their Christian faith."  

Also, pray for encouragement and strength for the Christians
remaining in Somalia as well as for those who have been forced to leave their
homes.  

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