For 15 years, Somalia was ruled by clan-based strongmen, each with his own private army. Over that period of chaos, violence and war, the women of Mogadishu have risked their lives time and again -- and in the process changed their country.
In Somalia, national laws, policies and procedures are not favourable to the rights of women and there is no framework to address widespread violence against women. This article is from Strategic Initiatives for Women in the Horn of Africa (SIHA) Network.
Supporters of some militia leaders have clashed with an armed Islamist group. Their opponents say the Islamic courts are terrorising local people. A top cleric says fighting will continue until the other side surrenders.