The Somali parliament’s deputy speaker, Osman Elmi Bogore has announced a decision to introduce Sharia, or traditional Islamic law, across Somalia. Members of Parliament passed an opposition bill unanimously, he said.
According to Aljazeera, Bogore said: ”There were 340 members at the session and they voted unanimously for the implementation of Islamic sharia in Somalia.”
"The bill ... is approved by the parliament... We have an Islamic government.”
The leader of the interim government, Sharif Sheikh Ahmed pledged to form an inclusive government after his election in January. The opposition had insisted that Ahmed needed to implement Sharia before a national dialogue could begin.
Somalia has been wracked by civil wars and failed international interventions since the ouster of dictator Mohammed Siad Barre in 1991. The latest invasion by the Ethiopian army started in 2006, with the last troops leaving in Jan. 2009.
Western observers, quoted by France 24, fear the rise of an Islamic government in Somalia, as does neighbouring Ethiopia, because of the possibility of extremism spreading throughout the Horn of Africa region.
On the other hand, Somalia is in dire need of a government, and observers have said Western neglect has contributed to the situation, which has resulted, among other things, in widespread piracy launched from Somali shores.