president, and, although
a harsh socialist regime then ruled the country until its collapse in 1991, many
improvements were made to the country, particularly in the field of literacy.
Armed and supported by Ethiopia, clans from across Somalia brought down the
governing regime, but this civil war badly affected food distribution, leaving
an estimated third of a million people dead. Since that time the country has
been in almost perpetual conflict with no real rule of any government.
Even the United Nations withdrew, considering the area too unsafe to operate in.
The area known as Puntland is now
effectively a pirate
state and piracy is that area's main economy. Somalia is now fractionalised and
in dispute with itself and its neighbours over borders and territories with
prospects for peace low with daily outbreaks of fighting
across the land and particularly around the capital city of Mogadishu.
Such is the situation in Somalia that when ranked in terms of life expectancy,
literacy, access to knowledge and the living standards of a country Somalia is
merely 'not applicable'.
life expectancy in Somalia is just 48 years of age, and as
such, 44% of the country's population are children under the
age of fifteen. Of those over fourteen just 37.8%
are literate and 71% of all children suffer from malnourishment. Shockingly, an
estimated 200,000 Somalia children are believed to have taken up arms during the