The United Nations World Food Programme calls for the immediate release of Mr. Idris Osman, WFP's officer-in-charge of our Mogadishu office, who was taken at gunpoint by the Somali National Security Service (NSS) after the storming of a UN compound in Mogadishu this morning at 0815 local time by 50-60 heavily armed and uniformed members of the NSS.
Mr. Osman is being held in a cell at NSS headquarters near the presidential palace. WFP has not received any explanation for this action, which violates international law. International law also bars authorities from entering UN premises without prior UN permission.
No shots were fired during the storming of the UN compound. WFP on Monday started providing food assistance to 75,600 people in Mogadishu through 42 mosques identified by the office of the Governor of Bendir Region. This is the first distribution of WFP food in Mogadishu since June 25th.
In the light of Mr. Osman's detention and in view of WFP's duty to safeguard its staff, WFP is forced immediately to suspend these distributions and the loading of WFP food from our warehouses in the Somali capital.