These two news items caught my eye over the last 2 days. They defy all parameters of common sense,religious convention and human rights and yet such things are increasing in many impoverished and lawless countries.Extreme ideologies seem to thrive best amidst poverty,illetracy and religion often gets hijacked by fringe lunatics seeking space in the centre.As usual women seem to be the primary sufferers


Somali women flogged for wearing bras


  • Published: 00:00 October 17, 2009

Mogadishu () Somalia’s hardline militant group Al Shabab has publicly whipped women for wearing bras they say violate Islam by constituting a deception, north Mogadishu residents said on Friday.

The insurgent group amputated a foot and a hand each from two young men accused of robbery earlier this month. They have also banned movies, musical ringtones, dancing at wedding ceremonies and playing or watching soccer.

Residents said gunmen had been rounding up any woman seen with a firm bust and then had them publicly whipped by masked men. The women were then told to remove their bras and shake their breasts.

“Al Shabab forced us to wear their type of veil and now they order us to shake our breasts,” a resident, Halima, said.

“They first banned the former veil and introduced a hard fabric which stands stiffly on women’s chests. They are now saying that breasts should be firm naturally, or just flat.”

Officials of Al Shabab declined to comment.

Abdullah Hussain, a student in north Mogadishu, said his elder brother was thrown behind bars when he fought back a militant who humiliated their sister by asking her to remove her bra.

Men were not spared the ‘moral cleansing’. Any man caught without a beard has been publicly whipped.

“I was beaten and my hair was cut off with a pair of scissors in the street,” Hussain said.


AK 47 for contest winner

Kismayu:GDN 18th October

The 17 year old winner of a Quran recital and general knowledge competition organised by Al Shabaab rebels in Southern Somalia got an AK-47 gun,two hand grenades,a computer and an anti-tank mine as prizes.The runner up in the month long competition aimed at 10-25 year olds, a 22 year old, received an AK-47 and ammunition at the ceremony,where the rebels urged the parents to allow the children to learn how to handle weapons and fight. Somalia’s 18 year conflict pits Al Shabaab and Hizbul rebels against the UN-backed government of President Sheikh Sharif Ahmed.