Sheikh Sharif Sheikh Axmed, leader of ARS, joins TFG and becomes president of moderate Islamist coalition, gaining support in central and northern Somalia (probably not as much support as the map suggests, but these are general areas of support, broadly speaking).

Maps of Territorial Control in Somalia, 2007-2010

I just came across this series of maps of territorial control in Somalia in my map archive. Note that these maps are based largely on James Dahl’s map series on territorial control in Somalia and on UN maps of displacement, combined with my own research on conflict events. Forgive me if I mix my Somali and English while transliterating.

Clearly, any map purporting to show areas of control in Somalia is likely oversimplified; alliances are constantly shifting, and multiple insurgencies may exist within an area shown to be under control of a certain force. However, this represents an attempt to map the story of the aftermath of Ethiopia’s invasion in 2006, and show how foreign intervention may have affected the growth of extremist insurgency, specifically in southern Somalia. “Unaligned” territories reflect those areas where it was unclear who was supported or in control. This is a work in progress, so please provide feedback if there are inaccuracies or changes that need to be made.

2007-2009: The Aftermath of the Ethiopian Invasion

December 2008: Cabdullahi Yuusuf Axmed resigns as president of TFG.

2009-2010: The TFG strikes an alliance and begins an offensive

As the TFG in exile brokered a truce with ASWJ, ARS, and ICU elements, they began to gain support and nominal control over parts of the country. Sheikh Sharif Sheikh Axmed, formerly of ARS, was elected TFG President. Along with AU forces, the TFG launched an offensive against the now divided Al Shabaab and Xisbul Islaam forces in southern Somalia.

Again, please let me know if there are corrections to be made. This is an ongoing initiative to map territorial control in Somalia, part of a more comprehensive effort at creating conflict maps of Somalia.

What are your thoughts?