Ahmed Sheikh Sharif

Ahmed Sheikh Sharif

President of Somalia
Date of Birth: 25.07.1964
Country: Somalia

  1. Biography of Ahmed Sheikh Sharif
  2. Rise to Power and Fight Against Crime
  3. Conflict and Reconciliation
  4. Presidency and Political Progress

Biography of Ahmed Sheikh Sharif

Ahmed Sheikh Sharif, the current President of Somalia, was born on July 25, 1964, in the suburb of Mahadday in the northern part of Somalia. He received his school education in Jowhar and later in the capital city, Mogadishu. Ahmed studied Arabic language and geography at the University of Kordofan in the Sudanese province of Kurdufan, and law in Libya.

Rise to Power and Fight Against Crime

Since 1991, Somalia has been plagued by a civil war, and the capital city has become a center of conflict, leading to a surge in crime. With the support of the local population, Ahmed Sheikh Sharif establishes a district-level Sharia court and becomes its chairman. Later, he and his like-minded individuals launch a campaign against crime on a city-wide level. In July 2004, the Islamic Courts Union of Somalia (ICU), also known as the Union of Islamic Courts (UIC), is formed, with Ahmed Sheikh Sharif as its leader. While Ahmed Sheikh Sharif himself adopts moderate positions, the organization attracts a significant number of radical Islamists, many of whom are suspected of engaging in terrorist activities. According to the United States, Somalia becomes a regional hub for Al-Qaeda's activities. The ICU gains influence and soon takes control of Mogadishu, as well as the central and southern parts of the country.

Conflict and Reconciliation

In 2006, a military conflict erupts in Somalia, with Ahmed Sheikh Sharif's supporters, now considered militants, opposing the transitional government and receiving support from Ethiopian forces backing the opposing side. By the beginning of 2007, government troops and Ethiopian forces push the Islamists out of the capital and most of their occupied positions. On January 8, 2007, the United States intervenes in the conflict, launching strikes against militant positions in southern Somalia.

On January 22 of the same year, Ahmed Sheikh Sharif surrenders to Kenyan authorities at the Kenya-Somalia border. However, he is released after a few days and travels to Yemen. In July 2007, he refuses to participate in a reconciliation conference. In September 2007, the Somali opposition forms the "Alliance for the Liberation of Somalia," led by Ahmed Sheikh Sharif. On behalf of the Alliance, he signs an agreement with the government to abstain from any armed confrontation for three months.

Presidency and Political Progress

In November 2008, Ahmed Sheikh Sharif returns to Somalia, where the conflict between the government and Islamists continues. It is at this time that he makes a politically astute move by proposing to replace Ethiopian forces in the country with international peacekeeping forces. Ahmed Sheikh Sharif's political popularity grows, and in January 2009, 149 representatives of the Alliance are elected to the Somali parliament. On January 31, after voting took place outside the country in Djibouti, it is announced that Ahmed Sheikh Sharif has become the new President of Somalia.