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Somalia transitional government fires former speaker, 29 others

[JURIST] The Somali transitional government [official website] dismissed former parliamentary speaker Sharif Hassan Sheik Aden [Wikipedia profile] and 29 other parliamentary members on Tuesday in what is purported to be an attempt to consolidate the government's power over the legislature. Aden had been replaced as speaker in January by someone more closely tied to the new government, in a move criticized by the US [Washington Post report]. The 29 other members removed Tuesday are believed to have close ties with Aden and the former government.

In January, the transitional government began imposing martial law [JURIST report] over areas under the government's control, two weeks after martial law was approved by parliament [JURIST report]. Somalia has endured a lengthy civil war and several rounds of failed peace talks [BBC timeline] since the collapse of its last civil government in 1991. AP has more.

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