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HISTORY OF SOUTHWEST SOMALIA (SWS) OR (AZANIA)

Located at the juncture of the Arabian and African tectonic plates, the Eastern (Great) Rift Valley, Southwest Somlia is one of the oldest regions of the Horn of Africa. There are Paleoanthropological excavations in SWS, where the most significant sites are in the Doi region such as Buur Heybe “the mountain of the clay sand,” referring to the abundant clay materials available in the area. Historically, Buur Heybe has been an important political and religious center of the area. The oral tradition of the Doi belt suggests the existence of pre-Islamic dynasties using Buur Heybe as their Headquarters. In the 1930s, archaeologists found partial skeletons of Australopithecus Afarensis in rock shelters, dating back to 3 million years ago. The pre-historic aspect of Buur Heybe is also evident in the history of pottery production in the region and the survival of prehistoric form of hunting practiced by the Eyle (hunters with dogs) even today.

The region had commercial ties with ancient Mesopotamians, Egyptians, Persians, Arabs, Greeks, Romans, Indians and Polynesians. Mesopotamians called it “Black land of Meluha,” and Egyptians called it “the land of gods,” the Arabs named as “Bilad al-Zanj,” and the Greeks referred as “SWS,” just to mention some. The navigational value of the monsoon winds boosted the trade in the Indian Ocean particularly with the rise of Islam. Azania ports of Mogadishu, Merca, Brawa and Lamu flourished. Muslims of SWS established also some powerful hinterland states and emirates such as Lug, Bali, Hadya and Harar just to mention some.

During the colonial times, the region suffered from colonial partition. South of Juba River “Oltre Juba,” fall under British and incorporated with Kenya where the Inter-riverine areas, between Juba and Shabelle, went with Italy amalgamated with the Hawiya and Darood territories of Hiran, Mudug and Mijurtinia, today Puntland. The northwestern parts went with Ethiopia. Under these diverse colonial administrations, the Reewing suffered a lot from colonial exploitation.

From independence to the fall of Mohamed Siad Barre the region and its people started losing their historical identity. Under the name of nationalism and homogeneity their culture eroded; their languages were banned and they were marginalized. Their historical regions were repartitioned and broken down into several regions to accommodate the Hawiye and Darood expansion and migration. Out of resettlement schemes of 1973/74, new regions were carved such as Gedo for Marehan, Middle Juba and Bakool for Ogaden, Lower Juba for Harti. The historic Banadir was scrambled to become Lower Shabelle, Middle Shabelle and Mogadishu for both Hawiye and Darood.

In March, 1995, in the midst of the Civil War, the Reewing established their own autonomous state, the Reverine State, with two houses; an elected house of representative presided by Dr. Hassan Sheikh Ibrahim “Hassey,” and the House of elders chaired by Malak Mukhtar Malak Hassan, the traditional Chief of Chiefs of the Reewing people. However, in September 17, seven months later, this initiative was aborted and the Riverine State was overthrown by Mohamed Farah Aideed. In 1997, the Somali Peace and Reconciliation Conference, held at Sodere, Ethiopia recognized that, the Reewing or Digil and Mirifle will have the same political claims as the Hawiye, Darood and Dir in Somali governance. At Mbeghati, Kenya, in 2004, one of their languages Af-Maay was acknowledged as another official Somali language.

ADMINISTRATIVE REGIONS

SWS falls in six regions: Shibeely (Shabelle), with capital Afgoy;Doi, with capital Bur Hakaba; Dehy (Banadir), with capital Mogadishu; Jubba, with capiatal Lug; Adybly (Adable), with capital Bardhera; and Gol, with capital Kismayu.

HEADQUARTERS

The capital city of Azania is Baidoa.

MAJOR ECONOMIC RESOURCES

This include, agriculture resources such as grain, corn, sesames, bananas, mango; diverse marine resources; livestock and minerals i.e. gold and uranium.

Aqriso Xili Waliba & Saacad Kasta Si Aad U Heshid Wararka Ku Saabsan Qowmiyada Digilmirifle Meelkastoo Ay Joogaan Wixii Kusoo Kordha ama si lagaaga Xaqabtiro Akhbaaraad Badan la Soo Xiriir Email: infosws@swsomalia.comama maamulkajaaliyada@gmail.com

SWSomalia.com Information Centre
COMMENTS (2)
Maxamed says: Sunday, August 19, 2012 at 16:49:34
Eed iyo eed iyaa infaaylaye ra,igakan lanki sheeni la,an walbadan iyaa infiirside
Saciid salah says: Tuesday, November 01, 2011 at 17:14:18
ki mahad sin tiin nidaam ii sidi inku run sheegten tariqdi wali kale jeladi lahayey in tii idacado sidi camal hang ku jeeedidaang.
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