Sheikh Sharif Sheikh Ahmed on
Talk to Jazeera
Sheikh Sharif Sheikh Ahmed, the leader of Somalia's Union of Islamic Courts, talks to Al Jazeera.

In this episode of Talk to Jazeera Sheikh Ahmed talks about the history of the Union of Islamic Courts, the situation in Somalia and the role of Ethiopia in the country's conflict.

He says the current Somali government was created to fulfill the desires of the Ethiopian government and its plans for Somalia and he argues that the government is fighting the traditions and culture of the Somali people.

He describes Somalia's shariah courts as a kind of mini-state and says they seek to ensure peace and stability, to settle disputes, raise awareness and help guide their citizens.

Al Jazeera asks Sheikh Ahmed if there are al-Qaeda fighters in Somalia and whether the Union of Islamic Courts is aligned with al-Qaeda and receives any financial support from the group.

Watch this episode of Talk to Jazeera here:

This episode of Talk to Jazeera aired from 15 April 2007

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