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Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Somali Cabinet votes for Islamic law

Wed, 11 Mar 2009 13:28:49 GMT     |     PressTV

Somalia's new Cabinet has endorsed the implementation of Islamic law (Shria) -- a move that could win the support of armed factions.

Prime Minister Omar Abdirashid Ali Sharmake chaired Tuesday's cabinet meeting in the capital Mogadishu, where the ministers endorsed the introduction of Islamic law after an hour-long debate.

"The cabinet members discussed deeply on the issue regarding the Islamic Sharia law and the members unanimously approved full implementation," said Somali Information Minister Farhan Ali Mohamoud.

He described Islamic law as the only solution to the problems in the Horn of Africa country which has long been riddled by civil unrest.

This is while al-Shabaab fighters - affiliated to the Union of Islamic Courts (UIC) - have rejected the plan, calling it 'ridiculous'.

Al-Shabaab insurgents
"We will not recognize the outcome of apostate cabinet ministers and apostate parliamentarians," the secretary information of al-Shabab, Sheik Hassan Ya'kub, said.

"We want an Islamic government that does not have the support of the United Nations and Ethiopia. We will not accept a government that Burundian and Ugandan troops are keeping guard," he added.

Nevertheless, Muse Abdi Aralle, the spokesman of Hizbul Islam (Islamic party) - an alliance of four groups that control parts of the capital and have influence in the port town of Kismayo - said that they will wait from the government to fulfill its commitment.

Somali President Sheikh Sharif Sheikh Ahmed
"We were fighting for the Sharia to be implemented, so we are waiting from them to carry out their promise," Muse Abdi Aralle said.

Last month, President Sheikh Sharif Sheikh Ahmed agreed to proposals by local and foreign religious leaders for a truce with armed groups and the implementation of Sharia law.

The bill is to go before the county's parliament in the next few days, where it is expected to receive an overwhelming approval. 

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