By Sarah DuttonIt’s been a strange year for Muslims in Somalia.
The government has been in the news over a report in the Guardian that it had ordered the arrests of dozens of suspected terrorists in Somalia and warned of “massacres” if they were allowed to return home.
It was the most high-profile crackdown since the Islamist insurgency in 2011.
It sparked widespread condemnation in the country and raised fears of a return to the dark days of the 1980s and 1990s, when a religious and political divide between Muslims and non-Muslims was still wide open.
There have been calls to abolish the country’s draconian blasphemy laws, but those proposals have so far stalled in the parliament.
The new report also said that around 700,000 Somalis had become Christians since 2011, though the number of Muslims has fallen significantly.
“It’s a very complicated country and there are still problems, but we are getting a lot better,” said a government official.
“But I think the biggest thing is that Somalis have been liberated from the idea that we’re still in Somalia.”
The official added that “freedom from God” was a big issue in the new report.
“This is the first time that we are able to show that Somalia is not the same as it was when the crisis began,” the official said.
“It’s the first step in establishing the government of freedom from God.”
While the report was met with a mixture of cheers and cries of outrage, many in the Muslim community have questioned the government’s stance on the situation.
Many Muslims are wary of any changes that might result from the report and have already begun to organise a peaceful protest in Mogadishu on March 4.
Somali blogger Mohamed Ibrahim wrote on Facebook that he had been warned by the government that “this is the start of mass arrests and violence”.
“There are people who are very afraid and have decided to go on hunger strike.
People are waiting outside the Ministry of Defence, hoping for some sort of a response,” he wrote.”
People are getting very angry, and they’re trying to organise their own peaceful protests in front of the Ministry.
There’s a huge crowd in front, and the police are coming towards us.””
The government is trying to control everything that happens in Mogador.
We don’t want the situation to deteriorate and the situation should be stable.”
In a sign that the country is beginning to re-examine its relationship with the outside world, the country recently announced that it will no longer be a member of the EU, a move that has raised concerns about Somalia’s international standing.
The country’s UN envoy, Mohamed Ali, has warned that the international community will take action against the government if it does not reverse its policies and reform its foreign policies.
“If Somalia doesn’t change its foreign policy and its approach, there will be consequences for us, the international communities, the government and the people of Somalia,” he said.
The Somali government has also been hit by accusations of being behind the death of a prominent journalist, Abdullahi Mohamed, who was shot dead by an unknown gunman during an interview with the Associated Press in June.
The murder sparked widespread anger in the community, with some saying the killing was a sign of government incompetence.
“I think the government is responsible for the murder of Abdullahi.
If he didn’t go to the police station to report the crime, the people would have beaten him up.
But the government did it,” Ibrahim told Al Jazeera.”
In the meantime, I think it’s very important that we understand that this is a problem.
We are suffering from a big problem and we need to take care of this problem.”
Mohamed Ibrahim has been fighting the government since the 1990s.
He has been a journalist for 30 years, covering the conflict in Somalia from a safe distance.
He says the country has been left behind by other countries and he is not afraid to call it a “failure”.
“When you see Somalia in the global spotlight, you feel a lot of pressure from the outside.
The international community has been very supportive of us,” he added.”
The situation is really difficult for us.
We need to be strong and strong people, and I believe in this country.”
But while the government has welcomed the support of the international world, Ibrahim says it is time to stop blaming the country for the problems that it has created.
“We need to move away from blaming ourselves and stop blaming Somalia,” Ibrahim said.
“When we say that Somalia has a problem, the problem is on the ground and it’s not our fault, but our own problems, and that’s why we need help.”