Somalia’s militant Islamic group Al-Shabaab reportedly took over the running of an independent broadcaster and abducted a reporter in a new round of clashes in areas of the country that it still controls.
The move has left telecom executives in Somalia and in neighbouring Kenya worried that the militant group could attempt to shut down more communications and hinder citizen’s ability to use telecommunications.
“It is definitely something that we must keep an eye on in order to know where the whole sector is heading right now. It is tense in Somalia and nobody is going to be interested in boosting telecom infrastructure. It’s just too risky,” a communications official within the Somali government said.
According to a witness, Al-Shabaab militants stormed the premises of Radio Afgoye and seized most of the equipment before abducting radio journalist Ayub Yusuf Dalmar.
The group has a history of forcibly taking over independent media outlets in Somalia.