“When the other young men in my clan were collecting weapons to take revenge, I declared that we must stop killing each other. In a battle you never know who wins. The dead are lost forever. The young people understood what I was saying, and our dialogue started,” says Mohamed Mohamoud Yosuf (right). He mediated a conflict that had originated in smuggling and claimed a number of deaths in Somalia. The Finn Church Aid (FCA) helped him. Ali Ismail, the eldest in a sub-clan, was the counterpart in the negotiations. Together they managed to break the two-year-long cycle of revenge.
The state of Somalia disintegrated in 1991, and the civil war began. After a few more peaceful periods, the violence escalated again in the 2000s. FCA has preserved peace in Somaliland and elsewhere in Somalia since 2007. In 2014 and 2016 alone, 36 peace agreements were reached with FCA’s support. The FCA peace project also brokered peace with 12 clans. As a result the clans agreed to the founding of the Central Regions State and a local administration in summer 2015. Finland supports the Finn Church Aid from development cooperation funds.
Photo: Meeri Koutaniemi, graphics: Juho Hiilivirta