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Treasury Targets Regional Actors Fueling Violence and Instability in Somalia

(Archived Content)


Action Targets al-Shabaab Supporters Based in Somali​a and Kenya as Well as Eritrean Officials

WASHINGTON –The U.S. Department of the Treasury today designated six individuals pursuant to Executive Order (E.O.) 13536, “Blocking Property of Certain Persons Contributing to the Conflict in Somalia.”  The individuals targeted today include Col. Tewolde Negash and Col. Taeme Goitom, two Eritrean government officials; Suhayl Salim Muhammad `Abd-el-Rahman (aka Abu-Faris), a Sudanese al-Shabaab foreign fighter facilitator; and Abubaker Shariff Ahmed, Omar Awadh Omar and Aboud Rogo Mohammed who are three Kenyan al-Shabaab supporters.    

The President issued E.O. 13536 in April 2010 to target individuals and entities engaging in acts that directly or indirectly threaten the peace, security or stability of Somalia.  Al-Shabaab was listed in the annex of E.O. 13536.  It was also previously identified in February 2008 by the State Department as a Foreign Terrorist Organization and designated pursuant to E.O. 13224, the U.S. government’s terrorism sanctions authority.  Previous designations under E.O. 13536 have included members of al-Shabaab, a member of the Eritrean government, and pirates that operate in Somalia and neighboring countries throughout the region.  Today’s designations of individuals based in Somalia, Kenya and Eritrea highlight the regional nature of the conflict in Somalia.

“The United States is determined to target those who are responsible for the ongoing bloodshed and instability in Somalia,” said Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) Director Adam J. Szubin. “By designating these individuals today we are taking action to support our partner governments in East Africa and the African Union Mission in Somalia in their efforts to dismantle al-Shabaab.”

Col. Tewolde Habte Negash

Eritrean Intelligence Officer Col. Tewolde Habte Negash funnels money to anti-Transitional Federal Government (“TFG”) groups in Somalia, including al-Shabaab.

Col. Negash was the principal architect of the Government of Eritrea’s relationship with al-Shabaab in Mogadishu in 2006 and he has been the principal coordinator of financial and logistical support to a number of armed groups, including al-Shabaab, since 2004.  He has remained actively involved in Eritrean training of and support to foreign armed opposition groups since December 2009 and is reported to have traveled over land from Uganda, through Kenya, and on to Somalia in September 2009 where he met with members of al-Shabaab and other armed groups.

Col. Negash reportedly spent considerable time in Mogadishu for a period beginning in 2006 coordinating support to armed groups, including al-Shabaab.  He reportedly provided explosives training to another armed group in Mogadishu in 2006 and he appears to have been indirectly involved in the training of al-Shabaab fighters between 2007 and 2009 at an Eritrean training camp for instruction in suicide bombing and vehicle-borne improvised explosive devices.

Col. Taeme Abraham Goitom

According to a March 2010 report issued by the UN Security Council Somalia/Eritrea Sanctions Committee’s Monitoring Group, officials of the Alliance for the Re-Liberation of Somalia (“ARS”) described Col. Goitom as a senior government official who played a direct role in decisions concerning key ARS appointments. The Asmara wing of the ARS was a component of the former rebel group Hizbul Islam, which joined al-Shabaab in December 2010.  Under Hizbul Islam, ARS-Asmara established a serious military threat against the TFG and the African Union Mission in Somalia (“AMISOM”) forces. The Asmara wing of the ARS publicly rejected the election of President Sheikh Sharif Sheikh Ahmed and mounted sustained operations against TFG and AMISOM forces.  Col. Goitom has also been reported to be an important arms trafficker in the region with clients such as the insurgents in Somalia.

Suhayl Salim Abd-El-Rahman aka Abu-Faris

Abu-Faris is a Somalia-based Sudanese extremist who works on behalf of al-Shabaab facilitating the travel of foreign fighters to an al-Shabaab training camp in Somalia.  Abu-Faris also facilitates financial assistance for foreign extremists in Somalia.

Since 2007, Abu-Faris has acted as a facilitator for the entry of foreign fighters and extremists into Somalia and  has advised them when travel to Somalia is possible. In 2009, Abu-Faris facilitated the travel of foreign fighters to an al-Shabaab training camp outside Kismaayo.  In 2010, Abu-Faris facilitated the travel of extremists from Chad to Somalia. Abu- Faris coordinated the travel of such persons to Somalia via Nairobi.

Aboud Rogo Mohammed

Kenya-based extremist Islamic cleric Aboud Rogo Mohammed has engaged in acts that threaten the peace, security, or stability of Somalia and provided financial, material, logistical, or technical support to al-Shabaab.  Specifically, Aboud Rogo Mohammed’s activities include fund-raising for al-Shabaab.

 He continues to exert influence over extremist groups in East Africa as part of his campaign to promote violence throughout East Africa. As an ideological leader, Aboud Rogo Mohammed has used an extremist group as a pathway for radicalization and recruitment of principally Swahili-speaking Africans for action in Somalia. In a series of inspirational lectures between February 2009 and February 2012, Aboud Rogo repeatedly called for the violent rejection of the Somali peace process. During these lectures, Aboud Rogo Mohammed repeatedly called for the use of violence against both the United Nations and AMISOM forces in Somalia, and urged his audiences to travel to Somalia to join al-Shabaab's fight against the Kenyan Government.

Aboud Rogo Mohammed also offers guidance on how Kenyan recruits joining al-Shabaab can evade detection by the Kenyan authorities, and which routes to follow when traveling from Mombasa, Kenya, and/or Lamu to al-Shabaab strongholds in Somalia, notably Kismaayo. He has facilitated the travel to Somalia of numerous Kenyan recruits for al-Shabaab.

In September 2008, Aboud Rogo Mohammed held a fundraising meeting in Mombasa to help finance al-Shabaab activities in Somalia.  In September 2011, Aboud Rogo Mohammed was recruiting individuals in Mombasa for travel into Somalia, presumably to conduct terrorist operations. 

Omar Awadh Omar

Kenyan national Omar Awadh Omar (“Omar”) has provided financial, material, logistical, or technical support for al-Shabaab.  Omar has facilitated funding to al-Shabaab and is believed to have facilitated the movement of foreign fighters and supplies into Somalia. Omar was also allegedly involved in planning the July 11, 2010 attack against fans watching a World Cup match in Kampala, Uganda.  He is currently incarcerated in Uganda awaiting trial. Al-Shabaab claimed responsibility for this attack, which killed 74 people.

Abubaker Shariff Ahmed aka Makaburi

Kenya-based Abubaker Shariff Ahmed is a leading facilitator and recruiter of young Kenyan Muslims for “action” in Somalia, and a close associate of Aboud Rogo Mohammed.  He provides material support to extremist groups in Kenya and elsewhere in East Africa.  Through his frequent trips to al-Shabaab strongholds in Somalia, including Kismaayo, he has been able to maintain strong ties with senior al-Shabaab members. Abubaker Shariff Ahmed is also engaged in the mobilization and management of funding for al-Shabaab.  Abubaker Shariff Ahmed has preached at mosques in Mombasa that young men should travel to Somalia, commit extremist acts, fight for al-Qa’ida, and kill U.S. citizens.  Abubaker Shariff Ahmed was arrested in late December 2010 by Kenyan authorities on suspicion of involvement in the bombing of a Nairobi bus terminal.  Abubaker Shariff Ahmed is also a leader of a Kenya-based youth organization in Mombasa with ties to al-Shabaab.  As of 2010, Abubaker Shariff Ahmed acted as recruiter and facilitator for al-Shabaab in the Majengo area of Mombasa.

Identifying Information

Tewolde Habte Negash

AKA:  Abdirahim Muse

AKA:  Tewaled Holde Nagesh

AKA:  Senay Beraki Meharen

AKA:  Amanuel Kidane

AKA:  Tewold Habte Negash

AKA:  Tewelde Habte Negash

AKA:  Bitewelde Habte Negash

AKA:  Tewaled Holde Nagash

AKA:  Wedi

AKA:  Desta

AKA:  Abdirahman Musa

AKA:  Abdirahman Muse

AKA:  Emanuel Negash

AKA:  Abdirahim Musa

AKA:  Ole Negash

DOB:  5 September 1960

POB:  Asmara, Eritrea

Passport:  Diplomatic Passport No. D0001060

Passport:  Diplomatic Passport No. D000080

Nationality: Eritrean

Position: Intelligence Officer

Taeme Abraham Goitom

AKA:  Ta’ame Abraham Selassie

AKA: Abraham Selassie Ta’ame

AKA:  Te'ame Abraham Selassie

AKA:  Te’ame Goitom

AKA:  Tesfalen

AKA:  Tsegai

AKA:  Dha'ame

AKA:  Teame

AKA:  Ta’ame

AKA:  Gaamei

AKA:  Da'ame

AKA:  Simon Gebredengel

AKA:  Te’ame Abraha Selassie

AKA:  Mekele

AKA:  Mekelle

AKA:  Meqele

DOB:  1957

Alt. DOB:  1956

POB:  Akale Guzay (Shemejena)

Passport No.:  Laissez-Passer 02154

Position:  Head of Eritrean External Intelligence Operation

Title/Rank:  Colonel

Alt. Title/Rank:  Brigadier General

Suhayl Salim Abd-El-Rahman

AKA:  Abu Faris al-Sudani

AKA:  Abu-Faris

AKA:  Haytham Zayn

AKA:  Suhayl Abdurahaman

AKA:  Sahib Muhammad

AKA:  Suhayl Salim Abd El-Rahman

AKA:  Zain Ul-Abideen

AKA:  Sundus

AKA:  Saba

AKA:  Sana

AKA:  Suhayl Salim

POB:   Rabak, Sudan

DOB:  17 June 1984

Alt. DOB: 1990

Passport #: C0004350

Personal ID #: A00710804


Aboud Rogo Mohammed

AKA:  Aboud Mohammad Rogo

AKA:  Aboud Seif Rogo

AKA:  Aboud Mohammed Rogo

AKA:  Sheikh Aboud Rogo

AKA:  Aboud Rogo Muhammad

AKA:  Aboud Rogo Mohamed

DOB #1:  11 November 1960

Alternate DOB:  11 November 1967

Alternate DOB:  11 November 1969

Alternate DOB:  1 January 1969

POB:  Kenya

Alternate POB:  Lamu Island, Kenya

Citizenship:  Kenya


Omar Awadh Omar

AKA:  Omar Sahal

AKA:  Omar Awadh

DOB:  20 September 1973

POB:  Mombasa, Kenya

Passport:  Kenya #A764712, Expires 27 March 2013

Alt. Passport:  Kenya #B002271

Alt. Passport:  East Africa #KE007776, Expires August 2009

Location:  Kenya

Abubaker Sharrif Ahmed

AKA:  Makaburi

AKA:  Sheikh Abubakar Ahmed

AKA:  Abubaker Shariff Ahmed

AKA:  Abu Makaburi Shariff

AKA:  Abubaker Shariff

AKA:  Abubakar Ahmed

DOB:  1962

DOB #2:  1967

POB:   Kenya

Citizenship:  Kenya

Alt. Address:  Majengo area, Mombasa, Kenya