the summer extravaganza: issue two


Devastation in Somalia

by Connor Crout

image credit: GDJ (pixabay)

The UN has warned that eight of the 18 regions that make up Somalia are at serious risk of sliding into famine by September, with seven million Somalians already suffering from food insecurity. Reasons for this include a severe drought and effects of the Russian invasion of Ukraine. 

The drought started back in April, with some experts calling it the worst drought Somalia has faced in a decade. According to the UN, it forced 700,000 Somalians from their homes in search of food and water for themselves and their animals. 

When it comes to the Russian invasion of Ukraine, lots of international aid has been redirected away from other countries to Ukraine. This has also occurred in countries like South Sudan – their funding from the World Food Programme has been  suspended, being allocated to Ukraine.

These two events combined have caused devastating problems in Somalia and the wider region of East Africa.

The global cost of war: Somalia falling to famine as Ukraine conflict persists

by Aidan O’Connor

image credit: Feisal Omar (Reuters)

Much of the African continent is suffering the consequences of the Russia-Ukraine conflict and Somalia is no exception. The country located at the Horn of Africa has been in the midst of a crippling civil war since 2009 and is facing serious risk of famine in eight of its 18 regions, the UN has warned. This is largely due to a devastating drought and the ramifications of the conflict in Ukraine. Nearly half of the country’s under-five year old population is expected to suffer from acute malnutrition this year.

The Russia-Ukraine conflict has seen severe sanctions imposed against Russia. This has caused spikes in fuel and food prices, while Russia’s blockade of Ukrainian wheat exports has resulted in major disruptions to the global supply chain. The worsening situation in Eastern Europe has had an especially devastating effect on countries like Somalia, where over 90 percent of wheat imports come from Ukraine and Russia. Due to the ongoing conflict the price of wheat has doubled. With international aid lacking, Somalia’s despondent situation may only be getting worse.


Deadly border crossing attempt prompts investigation into border police violence.

by Harvey Young

image credit: Acad Ronin (Wikimedia Commons)

An investigation is being launched into excessive violence from Moroccan and Spanish border authorities after a clash between roughly 2000 migrants and police along the Moroccan border with the Spanish enclave of Melilla on Friday 26 June. This incident has left at least 37 migrants dead, and dozens of migrants and police officers injured, making it the deadliest incident in the border’s recent history. This has resulted in a wave of outrage among various human rights groups and international institutions.

The Spanish enclaves along the Moroccan coast are the only land borders between Africa and the EU and have therefore attracted many African migrants attempting to find a better life in Europe. These borders, however, are heavily policed on both sides and the border authorities are no strangers to accusations of excessive violence against migrants.

60 years later – what’s left of the Algerian dream?

by Neo Allert

image credit: Mike Rohsopht (Wikimedia Commons)

Nationwide ceremonies, mass pardons and a military parade: Algeria recently celebrated its 60th year of independence from France, its former colonial overlord, in a grand style. On the 5 July 1962 Algeria had finally gained independence after a vicious war that lasted eight  years, with thousands being tortured and millions being killed. The Algerian War was one of the most brutal conflicts since the Second World War and remains to this day a contentious topic in French-Algerian relations.

 Although the official slogan confidently announced ‘A day of glory for a new era’, the political, social and economic situation is rather dire. Opposition politicians and journalists fighting for democracy are constantly under threat of being arrested. 60 years after the victory of Algeria’s revolutionary struggle against colonialism and oppression, the Algerian dream of freedom, justice and prosperity has yet to be fulfilled.

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