Somalia: 15 Things You Didn’t Know (Part 1)

Mohamed Abdiwahab / AFP
Mohamed Abdiwahab / AFP

Somalia is a country in East Africa that has seen some rough years in the past few decades. It was warn-torn in the 1990’s, and this has left it ravaged for years. But it is a culturally rich nation, with civilizations on its land for centuries and centuries. Learn more about Somalia here in this first of the list.

Number Fifteen: Rapper K’naan is From Somalia

He came to Canada after being a child in the war-torn nation. He has spoken out about how he finds it strange when American or Canadian rappers talk about the difficulty of their lives because they have no idea how hard people in other countries have it.

Number Fourteen: An HBO Show is Being Made About Somali Refugees

It’s being developed by the previously mentioned rapper K’naan. And it’s about Jihadi recruiters in Minnesota.

Number Thirteen: In Somalia, You Can’t Celebrate Christmas

Individuals in Somalia were recently banned from celebrating Christmas. This, at first, seems like a religious freedom issue, but the ban was actually but in place because it was feared that Christmas celebrations would attract terrorists.

Number Twelve: It is the Only Country in the World Where Guns are Sold Openly at Markets

In Mogadishu, it is not uncommon to find assault weapons sold openly. Guns sold in the country have been found in the hands of terrorist groups in other countries.

Number Eleven: The United States Has Been Quietly Interfering in the Nation for Decades

The United States government has even funded local warlords in order to try and affect the way leadership changes in the country. The more cynical critics of this foreign intervention accuse the U.S. of trying to maintain control over Somali oil.

Number Ten: It Is Unique in its Form of Government

The government is all localized in Somalia, so law and social structure can differ greatly from region to region. However, without a centralized government, the nation is sometimes susceptible to violence and foreign interference.

Number Nine: Tourism Basically Does Not Exist

Other than Somali refugee families visiting relatives and old friends in the country, basically, no one enters Somalia. Especially not as tourists. Some reports suggest that in 2010, the first tourists came to the country as tourists in the past few decades. So things are looking up? Find out more about Somali in part two, coming soon.

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