Published: March 31, 2011

Bakaraha Market
The joint forces of the TFG and AMISOM have declared that they have never closed roads or access to Bakara Market.
In a joint statement they have castigated the extremists, Al Shabab, who have cut key roads by digging trenches and tunnels thereby restricting access to the Market.
The Minister of Interior and National Security, H.E. Abdishakur Sheikh Hassan, Mayor of Banadir, Mohamoud Nur, and AMISOM Force Commander, Major General Nathan Mugisha, met today 31 March, to declare their support for the business community and discuss the suffering of the population caused by the forced closure of Bakara Market by the extremists.
Despite the increased fighting, AMISOM and the TFG have maintained access along the Aden Adde Road, near Parliament, for commuters to access Bakara. Thousands of people use this access route each day.
However vehicles access remains difficult and the Government and AMISOM call on Al Shabab to repair the damage they have done and re-open roads to vehicular traffic.
Al Shabab must remove the obstacles, fill in the trenches and re-open these roads. They must also stop shooting at trucks and workers, stop extorting money from businesses, and stop the indiscriminate shelling and targeting.
TFG and AMISOM are willing to support the business community and are willing to respond to any requests or ideas which make their businesses run more smoothly.
TFG and AMISOM will cooperate fully with the businesses to ensure that they can function but they in turn must put pressure on Al Shabab to force them to stop their blockade and stop using the civilian population as a human shield.
The monsoon season is approaching and this raises concerns about the supply of food and other commodities. Smaller boats have difficulty getting into the Port, and small businesses find it harder to function. Therefore the government urges the business community to get their supplies in early before the monsoon so that stocks remain high.
The Government and AMISOM both feel and share the sentiments of the population but all inconvenience or hardship is the total responsibility of Al Shabab.

Barigye Ba-Hoku
AMISOM Force Spokesman

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