DADAAB, Kenya (AP) — Ayan Ali Hassan decided to leave Mogadishu when militiamen boarded her school bus and kidnapped two screaming boys. For Abdi Gadir Osman, the moment came when a mortar slammed into his mother’s home, killing her while she slept on a hot afternoon.Quote has been trimmed
"I couldn’t live in Mogadishu anymore, my whole family would have been killed eventually," said Osman, 25.
He is among some 20,000 Somalis who decided to flee their homeland this year, heading to the Dadaab refugee camp in eastern Kenya where they recalled a life of terror in Mogadishu.
Thousands of civilians have been killed in Somalia since 2007, caught in vicious disputes over ancient clan loyalties, religion and government. The country has not had an effective central government since 1991, when warlords toppled dictator Siad Barre and carved Somalia into armed camps ruled by clan law.
Dr. James Ndirangu, who works at a hospital in Dadaab, said the new arrivals display a range of problems, from malnutrition and psychosis to rape, torture and blast injuries.