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Somalia Timeline

  • 7th century- Arab traders established settled on the coast, introducing Islamism
  • 900- Mogadishu, the capital, founded as a trading center 
  • 1869- The area was made more appealing to European Imperialists by the opening of the Suez Canal
  • 1887- Britain established a Protectorate in northern Somalia. 
  • 1889- Italy formed a Protectorate in the central region, and by 1905 extended its power to the south (Italian Somaliland)
  • 1896-France established a colony in Djibouti. Colonial boundaries had now split Somalis into five areas: the two Somalilands, Djibouti, Ethiopia and Kenya.  
  • 1936- Italian Somaliland united with the Ethiopian Somalia making Italian East Africa. 
  • 1941- Britain gained control over both Somalilands after invading during World War II 
  • 1950- Italian Somaliland returned to Italy as a UN Trust Territory 
  • 1960- Both Somalilands gained independence and joined together to form the United Republic of Somalia.
  • 1969- Siad Barre’s army gained control to instate a Socialist Islamic Republic
  • 1970’s- Somalia and Ethhtiopia fight over the Ogadon Desert, which was inhabited primarily by Somali nomads
  • 1978- Ethiopia forced Somalia out of the Ogadon, resulting in over 1 million Somali refugees returning to Somalia
  • 1991- Barre overthrown, Ali Mahdi Muhammad and the United Somali Congress took over; Somalia’s clans broke out into a civil war

o North-west seceded as the Somaliland Republic with help from Ethiopia

o Famine ensued

o No UN aid was given until finally US Marines were sent to help with food distribution

  • 1994- 30 US marines died as a result of the war and US forces withdrew
  • 1996- Aideed, Somali National Alliance leader responsible for the destruction of Mogadishu, was killed
  • 1997- Catastrophic flooding displaced tens of thousands of people
  • 2001- The country’s leaders agreed in September to a plan for political transition by 2011
  • 2004- Yusuf voted president of Transitional Federal Government (TFG), which included a 275 member Parliament
  • 2006- Union of Islamic Courts took control of Mogadishu o In December the transitional government took control of the country 
  • but struggled to keep warlords out of power 
  • 2008- Yusuf resigned during meetings in Ethhtiopia between TFG and The Alliance for the Re-Liberation of Somalia (ARS)
  • 2009- A new TFG-ARS united government established a 5-year plan in which a constitution would be instituted and transition to a representative government after elections would take place
  • 2012- In August the full parliament was able to meet to end the 8-year transitional period and Hassan Sheikh Mohamud was elected president. He “took charge of a country riven by clan rivalries and with a weakened economy after suffering, in 2011, its most serious drought in six decades, one which had brought millions close to starvation and led many thousands to flee to Kenya and Ethiopia in search of food” (Hutchinson).
  • January 2013- Somali government now officially recognized by US includes new president, parliament, prime minister, and constitution 

"Somalia." article in Philip's World Factbook 2008-2009. London: Philip's, 2008. Credo Reference. Web. 8 January 2015. (A brief article)

"Somalia." article in  CIA World Factbook. Washington: CIA, 2012. Credo Reference. Web. 8 January 2015. (A much more substantial article.)

"Somalia." article in  The Hutchinson Unabridged Encyclopedia with Atlas and Weather GuideAbington: Helicon, 2014. Credo Reference. Web. 8 January 2015. (Substantial article.)

Pflanz, Mike. "US Recognizes Somalia Government After Two Decades of Anarchy." article in  The Chhristian Science Monitor: 4. Jan 18 2013. ProQuest. Web. 14 Jan. 2015 .

Research compiled by Hannah Insuik



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Somalis in Maine: Crossing Cultural Currents 
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Iskashitaa: An Invitation to Community [DVD]
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Barbara Eiswerth's model program, Iskashitaa, helps Arizona's new Somali Bantu community create a sustainable future for themselves and their families by harvesting excess fruit from local properties to feed their families, sell at farmer's markets and donate to food banks. It has since grown to include a variety of educational, advocacy, and intercultural programs.

Rain in a Dry Land [DVD] 
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Somali Bantu: A New Home, A New Life [DVD] 
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