Somalia: Cabinet passes anti-terrorism bill

Somalia’s cabinet on Thursday approved new legislation aimed at combatting terrorism in the country.

A high-level ministerial meeting to discuss the bill submitted by the Ministry of national security was chaired by Prime Minister Omar Abdirashid in Mogadishu.

According to a press statement from the Prime minister’s office, the new bill is aimed to tackle the growing insecurity and handle the terror groups. It will also empower law enforcement agencies in the country to effectively handle terror-related cases immediately.

The move comes one week after al-Shabaab militants launched a deadly attack on a Mogadishu hotel, leaving at least 20 people – a top diplomat– dead. In the past months, al-Shabaab has increased its attacks in the Somali capital, targeting gathering places such as hotels.

Anti-terror law was first introduced by the former cabinet in 2014 but it failed to proceed to the country’s parliament for approval due to undisclosed reasons.

If passed by the Parliament, the law is expected to target groups such as the al-Qaeda-linked militant al-Shabab.

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