You can read my article There Are Two Piracies In Somalia over at the African Loft. Only one of the piracies gets media attention. Everyone has heard about the Somali pirates raids on shipping. Not so many know of the far larger piracy. Since 1991-2 IUU, Illegal, Unreported, and Unregulated fishing fleets from all over the world have been fishing out the waters off the Somali coast, destroying the livelihood of Somali fishermen and fishing communities. During that same period, primarily countries from the European Union, have been dumping toxic and nuclear waste off the Somali coast.
With its usual double standards when such matters concern Africa, the “international community” comes out in force to condemn and declare war against the Somali fishermen pirates while discreetly protecting the numerous Illegal, Unreported and Unregulated (IUU) fishing fleets there from Europe, Arabia and the Far East.
Biased UN resolutions, big power orders and news reports continue to condemn the hijackings of merchant ships by Somali pirates in the Indian Ocean and the Gulf of Aden. If response to both piracy menaces was balanced and fair, these condemnations would have been justified. European Union (EU), Russia, Japan, India, Egypt and Yemen are all on this piracy campaign, mainly to cover up and protect their illegal fishing fleets in the Somali waters. …
The IUUs, which are estimated take out more than $450 million in fish value out of Somalia annually, neither compensate the local fishermen, pay tax, royalties nor do they respect any conservation and environmental regulations – norms associated with regulated fishing. It is believed that IUUs from the EU alone take out of the country more than five times the value of its aid to Somalia every year.
During this same time, as Johann Hari describes:
In 1991, the government of Somalia collapsed. Its nine million people have been teetering on starvation ever since – and the ugliest forces in the Western world have seen this as a great opportunity to steal the country’s food supply and dump our nuclear waste in their seas.
Yes: nuclear waste. As soon as the government was gone, mysterious European ships started appearing off the coast of Somalia, dumping vast barrels into the ocean. The coastal population began to sicken. At first they suffered strange rashes, nausea and malformed babies. Then, after the 2005 tsunami, hundreds of the dumped and leaking barrels washed up on shore. People began to suffer from radiation sickness …
There is lots more to the story, read more at the African Loft.
Special thanks to b real for his extensive research on the unfolding situation in Somalia, posted in the comment threads at Moon of Alabama. You can read some of the more recent developments with links to more information in the comment threads on these posts:
Behind ‘Fighting Piracy’
A Carrier Group to Attack Somalia
b real continues these topics and more at his newer location
africa comments blog.
If you want to follow events in Somalia and East Africa, I suggest you visit.