Somali Intelligence Agency shuts down telecommunications company over terror threats

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Somalia’s National Intelligence and Security Agency (NISA) has halted operations of the country’s biggest telecommunications company, Hormuud.

The telecom company accused NISA of raiding its headquarters in Mogadishu and attacking some of its staff, arresting some of them in the process.

Hormuud alleged that this follows the refusal of the company to provide financial details of its customers who use the EVC Plus Service as well as information about the company’s bank accounts as requested by NISA.

NISA in a statement indicated that it had requested information from the company to assist with investigations into the alleged involvement of some of its employees in terrorism after Hormuud had written to them for assistance regarding a terrorism-related issue.

In accordance with Article 8, Paragraph 3 of the National Security and Intelligence Agency Law, NISA requested further details after discovering terrorist connections with some of its employees.

“Rather than complying with the Agency’s request in the execution of its national duty, Hormuud Company refused to cooperate and ignored the requests. Additionally, the company dismissed the accused employees who were found to have ties to terrorism. This direct non-compliance constitutes a violation of Law No. 003, Article 48 of the National Intelligence and Security Agency, as well as Law No. 007, Article 11 of the Anti-Terrorism Law,” the statement said.

In response, NISA indicated that it took action and arrested some of the company’s employees who obstructed its work when it raided the Hormuud premises to obtain information about terrorist activities.

“In the course of fulfilling its lawful duties, the Agency took action and arrested some of the company’s employees who obstructed its work. It is crucial to note that the Agency’s objective is solely to obtain information about terrorist activities and not to disclose information about Somali citizens,” the statement further noted.

Many politicians including former Prime Minister, Hassan Ali Khaire have since condemned NISA’s actions.

“I am concerned about the actions taken by the National Intelligence and Security Agency against certain individuals within the leadership of Hormuud Telecom,” he wrote in a social media post.

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