Mogadishu (Somali: Muqdisho) is the capital city of the African country of Somalia. It is also the largest city in that country. It is located in the coastal Banadir region on the Somali Sea. The city has been an important port for the region for many centuries. Estimates of the city's population are between 1.5 and 3 million people.
Mogadishu's location in Somalia
|• Mayor||Mohamed Omar Habeb Dhere|
|• Police chief||Abdi Hasan Awale Qeybdiid|
|Time zone||UTC+2 (EAT)|
|• Summer (DST)||UTC+3 (EAT)|
Trade between the people in the Mogadishu area with other areas along the Somali Sea coast of Africa started as early as the 1st century. Muslim traders from the Arabian Peninsula came to the area during the 10th century. Because of trade with them, Islam spread through Somalia. The Portuguese tried to take control of the city, but failed. In 1871 Barghash bin Said, the sultan of Zanzibar, controlled the city.
In 1892, Ali bin Said let Italy use the city. Italy bought the city in 1905. They made Mogadiscio (Italian for Mogadishu) the capital of Italian Somaliland. The Italians took control of the area around the city in 1919 after minor resistance. Italian Mogadiscio from a small village of 1,000 inhabitants in the 1890s to a modern capital in 1940 of nearly 100,000 persons (of whom more than 1/3 were Italians), that was second only to Asmara in Eritrea for development inside the Italian Empire.
British forces that were in Kenya during World War II captured Mogadishu on February 26, 1941. The British ruled until they gave Italy control of the city again in 1952. Somalia became independent in 1960 with Mogadishu as its capital.
Rebel forces entered and took the city in 1990. They forced President Mohamed Siad Barre to resign and leave the country in January 1991. He went to Lagos, Nigeria. Some of the rebels said that Ali Mahdi Muhammad was the new president. Others said that Mohamed Farrah Aidid was president. A group of United States Marines landed near Mogadishu on December 9, 1992. They were the first part of the United Nations peacekeeping forces during Operation Restore Hope to go to the country.
Mogadishu is a commercial and financial center for Somalia. The economy got better after the Somali Civil War but there are still problems. Because there is no government, there is free trade without taxes or regulatory costs. This makes businesses not cost as much as it does in other places. Businesses have hired armed militias to have security. This is causing less violence in the city.
- Ali Mohammed Ghedi, former Prime Minister of Somalia
- Ayub Daud, professional footballer
- Barkhad Abdi, actor, film director and producer
- Cristina Ali Farah, author and intellectual
- Diriye Osman, writer and visual artist
- Elisa Kadigia Bove, actress and activist
- Faisal Jeylani Aweys, taekwondo practitioner
- Fatima Siad, fashion model
- Hassan Abshir Farah, MP, former Prime Minister of Somalia and former Mayor of Mogadishu
- Hawa Abdi, physician and social activist
- Iman, supermodel
- K'naan, award-winning musician
- Ladan Osman, poet
- Sir Mohamed Farah, international track and field athlete
- Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed, former Prime Minister and current President of Somalia
- Mohamed Nur, former Mayor of Mogadishu
- Musse Olol, engineer and social activist
- Mustafa Mohamed, professional athlete
- Omar Abdirashid Ali Sharmarke, former Prime Minister of Somalia
- Rageh Omaar, award-winning journalist
- Sa'id of Mogadishu, 14th century Islamic scholar and traveler
- Saba Anglana, international singer and actress
- Shaykh Sufi, 19th-century scholar, poet, reformist and astrologist
- Yasmin Warsame, supermodel
- Yasmine Allas, actress and writer
- Zahra Bani, professional athlete
- GlobalSecurity.org page on the city's history
- BBC News Mogadishu photo gallery
- Maps of Mogadishu in 1894, 1915, 1934, 1975, 1987
- Mogadishu at Google Maps
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Media related to Mogadishu at Wikimedia Commons