My third paper for @GI_TOC has gone live today.

It details illegal fishing practices in #Somalia and the capture of state institutions by illicit networks. (thread)

Many thanks to @ian_urbina // @OutlawOcean and @C4ADS for their assistance!…
The report presents three case studies to illustrate the intersection between illegal, unreported and unregulated (IUU) fishing networks and state corruption:
#1 - The environmentally destructive operations of gillnetters of Iranian origin off the #Puntland coast, abetted by a network of local agents and fisheries ministry officials.
#2 - The case of the Marwan 1, a long-haul trawler that once formed part of the notorious 'Somali 7' fleet. The vessel employed a #Kenyan crew allegedly subjected to forced labour and inhumane working conditions.
#3 - The North East Fishing Company (NEFCO), a locally owned company operating four trawlers in #Puntland waters.

NEFCO allegedly co-opted federal govt officials (including two ministers) to issue irregular documentation to facilitate the company’s seafood exports to #China.
These case studies illustrate that IUU fishing operations in Somali waters are often a product of a "public-private partnership" in transnational organized crime.
The report argues that the issuing of licenses and related documentation by competing state authorities continues to undermine the implementation of the federal-regional fisheries deal reached between the #FGS and #FMS in March 2019.
It concludes with nine recommendations aimed at disrupting IUU fishing operations in #Somalia.

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More from @PuntlandPirates

28 Apr
In December 2020, less than a month and a half before a highly volatile electoral process was supposed to take place in #Somalia, Turkey delivered 1,000 G3 rifles and 90,000 rounds of ammunition to the Somali federal government.
The materiel was intended for use by the Turkish-trained Haramcad ("Cheetah") special police unit.
Haramcad has since been linked to crackdowns on demonstrators and attacks on opposition politicians.

Yesterday, the unit raided the Mogadishu HQ of independent media outlet @MediaMustaqbal, confiscating equipment and beating up a journalist.

Read 4 tweets
15 Jan
The Financial Governance Committee (#FGC) has issued a damning advisory note concerning the #FGS Ministry of Petroleum and Mineral Resources' (MPMR's) oil & gas licensing efforts.

Current approach provides "poor value for money...that may last for 40 years or more."

The FGC raises concerns over "incomplete compliance with the FGS legal framework, and inadequate protection of FGS’s financial interests." Current MPMR approach risks "future legal and/or compensation claims against FGS."
The FGS makes seven principal recommendations. #7: "PSA negotiations do not prioritise short-term revenue (i.e. signature bonuses) at the expense of longer-term value."
Read 10 tweets
30 Nov 20
My second paper for @GI_TOC has just gone live.

It presents the first evidence of a criminal network based in #Somalia involved in the transfer of arms from #Iran to the #Houthis.

Some highlights (thread):…
The dhow Al Bari 2 was seized in the Gulf of Aden by the #Saudi Navy on 24 June 2020. It was discovered to be carrying a consignment of arms reportedly destined for the #Houthi administration in #Yemen.

Here's a full list of the seizure contents: Image
The head of the network responsible for the Al Bari 2 smuggling operation is Mohamed Omar Salim, a Somali national based in Bosaso. Salim's network has links to #Somaliland, Yemen, the #UAE, and Iran.
Read 14 tweets
12 Oct 20
@GI_TOC issued a detailed statement earlier today in response to Amal Express's claims (attached below). But in my personal capacity as the author of the report, I will respond here with some additional thoughts.

(1/14) Image
In its 9 October 2020 press release, Amal Express disputed the authenticity of an October 2019 remittance receipt published in my report. The receipt detailed the transfer of $19,500 by an arms dealer in Bosaso to an individual under US Treasury (OFAC) sanction. (2/14)
Amal's statement contained several inaccuracies, but the most personally damaging was the claim that I had ignored evidence the company had presented to me proving this remittance slip to be a "forgery." (3/14)
Read 14 tweets

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