Somalia 'Uncontrollable' Because of Al Qaeda Influx, PM Says

Reports of young men roaming the streets with clubs, machetes and guns as well as mortar fire targeting civilian areas deemed friendly to the government have forced families to flee, sometimes relocating more than once.

"These are areas that in the last 19 years people never flee. 125,000 in a matter of 2,3,4,5 days," said Shamarke. "That's unheard of, even in the worst times of Somalia."

Those that stay must live by al-Shabaab's rules, a strict interpretation of sharia Islamic law. Last month four young men reportedly had their hands and feet cut off as punishment for stealing cell phones.

The group has pledged its allegiance to Al Qaeda numerous times. An Osama bin Laden audio tape released last spring entitled "Fight on, champions of Somalia" called for al-Shabaab and other insurgent groups to overthrow the current government.

The Prime Minister says he believes that would be disastrous, not just for Somalia, but for the entire world. "It would turn the country into a safe haven where people could actually organize attacks in the EU, in the United Stations, in Asian Countries in African countries," he said. "I think the consequences are unimaginable."

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