Turkish ministry to train Somalis to fish, raise grain

Ninety male and female Somalis will come to Turkey to be trained on how to raise livestock, use tractors and other agricultural equipment, manage complexes, slaughter animals and fish as part of efforts of the Turkish Agriculture Ministry for its “Somali Action Plan.”

This photo shows Somali women carrying relief food in a settlement camp in Mogadishu. Turkey will train 90 Somalian farmers. REUTERS photo.

This photo shows Somali women carrying relief food in a settlement camp in Mogadishu. Turkey will train 90 Somalian farmers. REUTERS photo.

The plan was recently approved by the Agriculture Ministry, which will train Somali farmers selected by the Somali authorities how to raise livestock and use agricultural equipment. All the expenses of the participants will be covered by the Turkish ministry, which collected nearly $350 million in aid through various donations. Paid expenses include accommodation, transportation, training and food.

After receiving training for three weeks in Turkey, the Somali farmers will be given some plots of land by the Somali authorities to grow their own crops and raise their own animals. Farming equipment worth nearly 4.3 million Turkish Liras has been donated to the Somali Action Plan.

Turkey will also supply various seeds, tractors, irrigation systems and other equipment for the Somali farmers. The ministry plans to send nearly 100 tons of corn, rice and other vegetable seeds to the famine-stricken country.

Meanwhile, Turkey’s Meat and Fish Institute (EBK) plans to slaughter 3,000 cattle during the Kurban bayram holiday Nov. 6 to 9 and ship the red meat to Somalia. Turkey’s Grain Board (TMO) will also send nearly 35,000 tons of flour to the country. In total, Turkey will ship nearly 20 fishing boats, five excavators, 20 tractors, 20 heavy plows, 20 cultivator machines and 50 computers and printers to Somalia.

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and his family visited Somalia’s war-torn capital Mogadishu on Aug. 19 to highlight the need for greater famine relief. It was the first visit by a leader from outside Africa in almost 20 years.

“No word is sufficient to describe the agony there,” Erdoğan said while addressing the 66th session of the General Assembly of United Nations last month.

He said Turkey’s approach to Somalia was grounded firmly in humanitarian principles. “Along with emergency humanitarian aid, Turkey is also determined to help build the infrastructure facilities that will enable this country to stand on its feet.”

Sunday, October 23, 2011
ANKARA – Anatolia News Agency