In Kampala, African Leaders Discuss Maternal Health While Attacks Renew Concern over SomaliaJuly 19, 2010 By Schuyler NullLeaders from 49 African countries are meeting today in Kampala, Uganda, at the start of a scheduled week-long African Union (AU) summit on maternal and child health. Uganda is a fitting location, as it faces some of the toughest health and demographic challenges in Africa, including a very young and rapidly growing population and poor maternal health services. However, with the memory of last week’s twin bomb blasts still fresh, peace and security issues will surely be on the agenda as well.
Somalia’s lead insurgency group, Al Shabab, took responsibility for the attacks in Kampala, which killed more than 70 people. Al Shabab’s first prominent cross-border attack is only the latest sign that Somalia’s issues – which also include a very young and rapidly growing population – are starting to spill over its borders. For more on Somalia’s deepening crisis and its effects on the East African region, see New Security Beat’s recent analysis: “As Somalia Sinks, Neighbors Face a Fight to Stay Afloat.”
Sources: AP, Washington Post.
Photo Credit: Adapted from “Ugandan African Union contingent in Mogadishu, Nov. 25, 2007” courtesy of flickr user david axe.