On 31 August 2019, dramatic news emerged that the notorious security minister of Somalia’s Jubaland region had been detained. In the capital Mogadishu, federal authorities had arrested Abdirashid Hassan Abdinur (commonly known as Abdirashid Janan) for “serious crimes”. News of his detention brought hope to some of Abdirashid Janan’s victims that he might finally face justice. For years, the influential figure has been implicated in rights abuses in the Gedo region. These include targeted killings, torture, the unlawful transfers of detainees to Ethiopia, and the manipulation of humanitarian assistance. In 2015, I spoke to relatives of four people believed to have been executed at a detention facility in Dollow that August. Abdirashid Janan had been there and, according to the UN-mandated Somalia and Eritrea Monitoring Group, was “on the balance of probabilities, responsible for the killing of the four prisoners”.
Human Rights Watch: High-Profile Jailbreak Undermines Somalia’s Fight for Justice