Insight with Colin Freeman and Mary Harper: Somalia – From Bad to Worse?

Talk Monday 16th March, 2009

With a new government in the process of being formed in Somalia, are we going to see a new era of peace and stability after eighteen long years of violence and warlordism? Or does the new Prime Minister Sharmarke – himself a moderate Islamist – now have an impossible task ahead of him in trying to form a unity government and start a dialogue with Islamic militant group Al-Shabab? Will the recent withdrawal of Ethiopian peace-keeping troops simply serve to create more opportunity for the Islamists to cause chaos? And with piracy and kidnapping incidents on the rise, how are journalists to report from Somalia?

We hear from Colin Freeman about his experiences being kidnapped in Somalia last year as well as Mary Harper, Africa correspondent for the BBC on the wider political landscape.




Colin Freeman is the chief foreign correspondent for the Sunday Telegraph and was kidnapped by his own bodyguards for 40 days in December during an assignment to report on Somalia’s escalating piracy problem.
Mary Harper is one of the BBC’s Africa correspondents.
Mike Thomson is the chief foreign correspondent for the BBC Today programme and has won many accolades for his reporting from the world’s conflict zones, including, most recently the Prix Bayeux-Calvados Award (Radio category) for war reporting.