06-23-2018  6:24 pm      •     
The Skanner Report
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4

NEWS BRIEFS

AG Rosenblum Seeks Info from Oregonians

Oregon Attorney General seeks information on children separated from families at border ...

Community Forum: How Does Law Enforcement Interact With Vulnerable Populations?

Forum will focus on public safety and examine mental health and addiction issues ...

King County Council Recognizes Juneteenth

The Metropolitan King County Council recognizes a true 'freedom day' in the United States ...

Unite Oregon Hosts ‘Mourn Pray Love, and Take Action’ June 20

Community is invited to gather at Terry Schrunk Plaza at 6 p.m. on World Refugee Day ...

MRG Foundation Announces Spring 2018 Grantees

Recipients include Oregon DACA Coalition, Kúkátónón Children’s African Dance Troupe, Komemma Cultural Protection Association ...

Lawsuits allege racial profiling in Portland-area businesses

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — Several African Americans are suing big-box stores and restaurants in Oregon, claiming employees at those places wrongly accused them of stealing because they were "shopping while black."A Portland law firm has filed five lawsuits alleging racial profiling at businesses in...

Wildfire near Maupin more than doubles in size

MAUPIN, Ore. (AP) — A wildfire burning brush and grass near Maupin in north-central Oregon has more than doubled in size to 36 square miles (93 square kilometers).Fire officials say Saturday's efforts will include the use of helicopters to protect Maupin.The wind-driven wildfire is mostly...

Alaska city honors Guardsmen killed in crash after '64 quake

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — A month after the second most powerful earthquake ever was recorded, the Alaska port community of Valdez remained in ruins.A hulking Alaska National Guard cargo plane's mission April 25, 1964, was to deliver Gov. William Egan to oversee efforts to rebuild the town on...

The Latest: Alaska city unveils memorial to fallen Guardsmen

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — The Latest on an Alaska city honoring Guardsmen killed in crash after 1964 earthquake (all times local):1:40 p.m.Four men who died on a humanitarian mission to help rebuild an Alaska town following the second most powerful earthquake ever recorded have been honored...

OPINION

How Washington’s 'School Achievement Index' Became School Spending Index

New assessment categorizes schools not by quality of education, but level of funding officials believe they should receive ...

Black Mamas Are Dying. We Can Stop It.

Congresswoman Robin Kelly plans to improve access to culturally-competent care with the MOMMA Act ...

Hey, Elected Officials: No More Chicken Dinners...We Need Policy

Jeffrey Boney says many elected officials who visit the Black community only during the election season get a pass for doing nothing ...

Juneteenth: Freedom's Promise Still Denied

Juneteenth is a celebration of the de facto end of slavery, but the proliferation of incarceration keeps liberation unfulfilled ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Lawsuits allege racial profiling in Portland-area businesses

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — Several African Americans are suing big-box stores and restaurants in Oregon, claiming employees at those places wrongly accused them of stealing because they were "shopping while black."A Portland law firm has filed five lawsuits alleging racial profiling at businesses in...

Racist tropes in Ramadan TV satires anger black Arabs

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — In an attempt to capitalize on what's become a ratings bonanza for Arabic satellite channels during the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, two comedies struck the wrong chord with audiences when their lead actors appeared in blackface.Criticism was swift on...

Chaos on the border inflames GOP's split with Latinos

When more than 1,000 Latino officials __ a crop of up-and-coming representatives from a fast-growing demographic __ gathered in Phoenix last week, no one from the Trump administration was there to greet them.It marked the first time a presidential administration skipped the annual conference of the...

ENTERTAINMENT

Give up after scandals? Television history shows otherwise

NEW YORK (AP) — Say this about TV creators in 2018 — they don't give up easily.Three current shows — "Roseanne," ''Transparent" and "House of Cards" — have been crippled by scandal, but each plans to continue without their disgraced stars."The bottom line is...

Ornate NYC theater, used for years as a gym, to be restored

NEW YORK (AP) — For years, Long Island University's basketball team played in a French Baroque movie palace in downtown Brooklyn.The gilded wall fountains, plastered statuettes and towering, one-of-a-kind Wurlitzer organ pipes of the historic Paramount Theater were preserved by the...

Vinnie Paul, co-founder, drummer of Pantera, dies at 54

Vinnie Paul, co-founder and drummer of metal band Pantera, has died at 54.Pantera's official Facebook page posted a statement early Saturday announcing his death. The label of Hellyeah, his most recent group, confirmed the death but neither statement mentioned Paul's cause of death.His real name...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

AP PHOTOS: Germany salvages campaign on Day 10 of World Cup

MOSCOW (AP) — Germany midfielder Toni Kroos scored a dramatic late winner to come from behind and beat...

1 dead after attack at huge rally for Ethiopia's new PM

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia (AP) — A thwarted attempt to hurl a grenade at Ethiopia's reformist new prime...

Sanders says she was told to leave Virginia restaurant

WASHINGTON (AP) — White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders was booted from a Virginia restaurant...

Stars flock to the Dior debut of Kim Jones at Paris menswear

PARIS (AP) — In a week marked by big debuts, it was designer Kim Jones' turn at Dior Men on Saturday.The...

US moves 100 coffins to inter-Korean border for war remains

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — The U.S. military said it moved 100 wooden coffins to the inter-Korean border to...

1 dead after attack at huge rally for Ethiopia's new PM

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia (AP) — A thwarted attempt to hurl a grenade at Ethiopia's reformist new prime...

Nima Elbagir CNN

MOGADISHU, Somalia (CNN) -- Bashir Osman moves hurriedly along a white sandy beachfront, giving instructions to a driver operating a bulldozer. Near them, a large truck is ferrying away piles of rocks, clearing a sun-soaked beach lapped by the azure blue waters of the Indian Ocean.

Work here is well underway as Osman presses ahead with his new multi-million dollar project: to build a luxury beach resort in Mogadishu, the capital of war-torn Somalia.

"I knew one day that Mogadishu will become peace and we'll get stability," says Osman, who already owns two hotels in the city. "That is why I started to buy that land."

After more than 20 years of violence, Somalia moved a step closer to stability last September after picking its first president elected on home soil in decades.

And now, hope is gradually returning to parts of the East African country.

Although security is still an issue, Mogadishu has been experiencing an economic renaissance in recent months, boosted by members of the diaspora returning home to rebuild the country, as well as the efforts of local businessmen who never left.

Osman, who stayed in Somalia throughout its conflict, hopes his new development will attract holidaymakers from abroad. He says that he's already had American and British visitors staying in his hotels.

"More than 20 tourists they came," he says. "Some of them they came with their family to show Somalia, especially Mogadishu," adds Osman. "And really when they went back, they were so excited when they saw how Mogadishu looks like, how beautiful city we have, how beautiful beach we have and that is what we want to show them again and again."

Osman's ambitious new projects are part of a growing building activity that is reshaping many of the neighborhoods of bullet-ridden Mogadishu.

"If you go to Mogadishu the construction is very, very booming," says Osman. "That is the sign of peace," he adds. "Especially the people who came back from America and Europe, they start to open the new businesses."

Mogadishu's growing economy is manifested not just in real estate and the hotel sector. Telecommunications is also on the rise, while the aviation industry is spreading its wings too, with about 15 daily domestic and international flights.

"We have six different routes and basically next we'll be eight," says Osman Abdullahi, a young Somali entrepreneur who set up the ODAY express airline. "There is a lot of airlines that are planning to (come to) this country and hoping to (have) a hub over here."

Abdullahi admits that leaving the United States in 2010 to return home and start his business was a "100% huge risk."

He says that when moved back back to Somalia, it was too dangerous to even drive in Mogadishu. "That picture is already gone. It's a different picture today," he says.

This new picture can also be witnessed at Mogadishu's seaport -- Somalia's key national asset -- where creaking cranes lift goods from the commercial ships and boats lining the harbor. The wide array of imported construction materials, household goods and food are then loaded onto rows of waiting trucks.

The customs revenue collected from here has increased exponentially in recent times. And while the system is far from perfect, the income is crucial to the newly formed government in rebuilding the city, whose basic infrastructure has been shattered by war.

Currently, Somalia's economy is largely supported by aid from donor governments, while the relatively peaceful business environment is propped up by the African Union Mission in Somalia African (AMISOM).

The security forces squeezed the al Qaeda-linked Islamist militant group Al-Shabaab out of Mogadishu, but the insurgents still lurk and periodically launch terror attacks.

Brigadier Michael Ondoga, of AMISOM, told CNN recently that although Al-Shabaab was "largely defeated" in Mogadishu, there were still issues with its members "melting into the population" and taking advantage of the city's large size to hide.

But Somali security forces have succeeded in pre-empting many suicide attacks and have arrested some of the Al-Shabaab operatives hiding among the capital's population.

"The situation is generally good at the moment -- the security forces are controlling it very well," Ondoga said. "Here in the city now, the big guns are quiet, the streets are lit, many (in the) diaspora are coming back, new construction is going on, business is booming," he said.

And despite the long list of challenges, Mogadishu businessmen like Osman are hopeful of a brighter future.

"For me I was here (during the conflict) and the situation I see now is a situation I have never seen before. So the situation now is getting better," he says.

 

Carpentry Professionals
Portland Community Policing
Calendar

Photo Gallery

Photos and slide shows of local events

Lents International Farmers Market
The Skanner Report

The Skanner Foundation Scholarships