We, the undersigned coalition of women’s rights organizations, women’s rights activists, and women human rights defenders in the Somali region, express our deep sadness and grave concern over the alarming increase of femicides across the Somali territories. The recent incidents in Hargeisa and Mogadishu, where three men brutally murdered their wives, with two of them killed by knives and one burned alive, shocked our collective conscience. Additionally, numerous young women continue to be subjected to rape and murder in Somaliland.
The escalating number of women killed within the past four weeks constitutes a mass atrocity against women and girls in the Somali territories. These heinous acts are committed solely because of their gender, reflecting a grave violation of their fundamental human rights, mirroring the deep-rooted patriarchal norms that systematically devalue and marginalize women.
The pervasive culture of impunity and the inadequate regulatory framework within the Somali governments, coupled with entrenched gender inequalities, serve as fertile ground for these mass atrocities against women and girls. The lack of swift and effective justice for survivors, coupled with lax enforcement of laws, only emboldens perpetrators and perpetuates the cycle of violence.
We stand in solidarity with the women and girls of the Somali territories and reaffirm our commitment to tirelessly advocate for their rights and dignity. We urge the Somali government to prioritize the protection of women and girls and take decisive action to end the scourge of femicide and gender-based violence once and for all.
Therefore, we urgently call upon the Somali governments to:
- Demonstrate their commitment to protecting the rights and lives of women and girls by taking immediate action in to investigate the recent femicides and bring the perpetrators to justice.
- Strengthen legal protection mechanisms and ensure their effectiveness by enacting and enforcing the Sexual Offences Bills (SOB) to specifically address violence against women and girls and prevent further atrocities while holding perpetrators accountable.
- Hold accountable those who perpetrate violence against women and girls, regardless of their status or clan connections, to end impunity, restore faith in the justice system, and deter future acts of violence.
- Address the root causes of gender-based violence by promoting gender equality and challenging harmful societal norms and attitudes that perpetuate discrimination and violence against women and girls.
- Disability Protection Association. (DPA)
- Hargeisa Women Organization (HAWO Group)
- Human Rights Center Somaliland, (HRC)
- Iniskoy Protection and Development Organizations (IPDO)
- NAGAAD Network
- Naima Mohamed Hassan- Women Peace Activists
- Marginalized Group Action Network (MAGAN)
- Rashida Mohamud Abdurrahman, Lawyer, and Women’s Rights Activist
- Somalia Female Lawyers Association (SFLA)
- Somalia Women and Childcare Association (SWCCA)
- Somali Women Development Center (SWDC)
- Somaliland Environmental Protection and Development Organization (SEPDO)
- Somaliland Women Research Action Group, (SOWRAG)
- Strategic Initiative for Women in the Horn of Africa (SIHA Network)
- Voice of Somaliland Women Minority Organization (VOSOMWO)
- Women Advocacy Action Progress Organization (WAAPO)
- Women Human Rights and Environmental Education (WHEEA)
- Women Rehabilitation and Development Organization (WORDA)
- Women Rights Advancements and Protection Association (WRAPA)