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Somalia cabinet approves anti-terrorism law

[JURIST] The cabinet of the Somali transitional government [official website] approved a new anti-terrorism law allowing sentences of life imprisonment or execution for engaging in or funding terrorist activity, Somalia's Information Minister Madow Nunow Mohamed announced Monday. The law, which must still be approved by President Abdullahi Yusuf Ahmed [BBC profile], is a reaction to recent violence that the Somali government blames on a radical Islamic movement accused of supporting al-Qaida members.

Last month, Somalia's transitional parliament voted to authorize [JURIST report] the government to declare martial law in the country. In January, US air strikes targeted terror fugitives [JURIST report] wanted by the FBI whom the US believes were being sheltered in Somalia by the Council of Islamic Courts [BBC backgrounder]. Somalia has endured a lengthy civil war and several rounds of failed peace talks [BBC timeline] since the collapse of its last civilian government in 1991. Dow Jones has more.

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