September 13, 2013
Life Inside Somalia’s Refugee Camps

MOGADISHU, Somalia — At certain points, Mogadishu, longtime synonym for anarchy, terrorism, and urban warfare, is indistinguishable from many other cities in the developing world. Along Maka Al-Mukarama road, a former front line during Somalia’s civil war years, new storefronts and sidewalks have turned the few remaining stripped or sandbagged buildings into isolated novelties, relics of a conflict that the city seems eager to leave behind.
In the avenue’s median strip, there’s a single, toppled solar-powered street lamp, a recent victim of the jihadi militant group Al Shabaab. But scores of others are still standing—towering, brand-new, and functional. Even in the former government quarter, where the bombed-out shells of former embassies and ministry buildings are still walled over with sandbags, there’s evidence of a tentative recovery. So while the Turkish embassy might have been bombed a few days before my arrival in Mogadishu, the country is still going ahead with a handsome new complex in the devastated Lido Beach area, far from the heavily-guarded green zone where much of Somalia’s international diplomacy currently takes place. The embassy is in an early stage of construction, but its concrete frame rises high above the ruins surrounding it. Along the oceanfront, where the destruction is almost total, there are now freshly paved sidewalks lining streets without a single habitable building. Two years earlier, when Al Shabaab and an African Union peacekeeping force fought for control of the city, a visit to the oceanfront would have been out of the question—and so would even the modest infrastructural improvements I witnessed. Even at its most pulverized, Mogadishu hints at its potential recovery.
Read more. [Image: Armin Rosen]

Life Inside Somalia’s Refugee Camps

MOGADISHU, Somalia — At certain points, Mogadishu, longtime synonym for anarchy, terrorism, and urban warfare, is indistinguishable from many other cities in the developing world. Along Maka Al-Mukarama road, a former front line during Somalia’s civil war years, new storefronts and sidewalks have turned the few remaining stripped or sandbagged buildings into isolated novelties, relics of a conflict that the city seems eager to leave behind.

In the avenue’s median strip, there’s a single, toppled solar-powered street lamp, a recent victim of the jihadi militant group Al Shabaab. But scores of others are still standing—towering, brand-new, and functional. Even in the former government quarter, where the bombed-out shells of former embassies and ministry buildings are still walled over with sandbags, there’s evidence of a tentative recovery. So while the Turkish embassy might have been bombed a few days before my arrival in Mogadishu, the country is still going ahead with a handsome new complex in the devastated Lido Beach area, far from the heavily-guarded green zone where much of Somalia’s international diplomacy currently takes place. The embassy is in an early stage of construction, but its concrete frame rises high above the ruins surrounding it. Along the oceanfront, where the destruction is almost total, there are now freshly paved sidewalks lining streets without a single habitable building. Two years earlier, when Al Shabaab and an African Union peacekeeping force fought for control of the city, a visit to the oceanfront would have been out of the question—and so would even the modest infrastructural improvements I witnessed. Even at its most pulverized, Mogadishu hints at its potential recovery.

Read more. [Image: Armin Rosen]

12:55pm
  
Filed under: Somalia Refugees Mogadishu 
  1. byappointmentonly reblogged this from theatlantic
  2. jda3000 reblogged this from theatlantic
  3. wanahouston reblogged this from theatlantic
  4. mondedenuages reblogged this from theatlantic
  5. svanwyk reblogged this from urbanlanative
  6. randycwhite reblogged this from theatlantic
  7. reinaldous reblogged this from theatlantic
  8. amysall reblogged this from theatlantic and added:
    Along Maka Al-Mukarama road, a former front line during Somalia’s civil war years, new storefronts and sidewalks have...
  9. citylifechange23 reblogged this from theatlantic
  10. yngwie4 reblogged this from theatlantic
  11. alaventure reblogged this from theatlantic
  12. andrewwadenunn reblogged this from theatlantic
  13. milbullrdr reblogged this from theatlantic