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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Plight of Somalia Affects People Here

Editor: I am an asylum seeker from the war-torn Horn of Africa country of Somalia. Like many people living outside the United States I was delighted with the election of President Bill Clinton. But unfortunately, after more than a year in office his administration has failed to achieve any significant foreign policy breakthroughs. Scenes that are worth pointing out include the wasteful troop operation in Somalia in which large American and United Nations military contingents were deployed to restore peace and order in that anarchic, impoverished country. Thanks! The major success was ending the famine in which thousands died of starvation every day, but the UN mission's second objective of peacemaking tended to be futile and often scandalous. The subsequent withdrawal of Western forces was a blunder since the remaining UN troops mainly come from Third World countries and are lightly armed. They can do little to contain hostilities if they flare up again. The plight of Somalia also affects people here in the streets of Moscow, where hundreds of my compatriots who are victims of the dreadful war live in deplorable conditions. Some have been crowded into refugee camps outside the city in which there is no proper medical care, houses are poorly heated, hot water and electricity are frequently cut off. Police harassment is rampant and even worse for those who stay in town for they are thrown out of apartments as illegal residents and robbed in the name of fines. The Russian government has pledged constantly to legalize our stay, allowing us to live normally and get things like education. That now remains a dream. At the moment everyone is at least indifferent to us, claiming that they are burdened by their own load. It seems as if the world says, "You hailed from hell." Mohammed Assad Moscow