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War and Peace in SomaliaNational Grievances, Local Conflict and Al-Shabaab$
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Michael Keating and Matt Waldman

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780190947910

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: June 2019

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190947910.001.0001

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Women in Al-Shabaab

Women in Al-Shabaab

(p.251) Women in Al-Shabaab
War and Peace in Somalia


Stephen Harley

Oxford University Press

This chapter discusses the results of interviews with six women in Al-Shabaab who are or were married to Al-Shabaab fighters. These women lead a privileged existence both in terms of the quality of life that is accorded to them by Al-Shabaab's Executive Council, especially in comparison to the civilian population living under Al-Shabaab's control, and also the freedoms they are allowed. The women were permitted, and apparently encouraged, to run businesses and in support of that activity they were allowed access to smartphones and could travel relatively freely around Lower and Middle Jubba. The women occasionally participated in Al-Shabaab operations, taking advantage of the lax security that is applied to women to support intelligence gathering and fundraising for the organization.

Keywords:   Somali women, Somalia, Al-Shabaab fighters, wives, interview

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