Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.


US extremist in Somalia battles ex-comrades

30 April 2013, 15:44

Nairobi - An American extremist in Somalia is fighting former comrades in the al-Qaeda linked Shabaab insurgent group, in what he says may be his final stand, he writes.

Alabama-born Omar Hamami - better known as Al-Amriki or "the American" - once fought alongside the hardline Shabaab in Somalia, but last year fell out with the fighters who now want to kill him.

He is also wanted by the US government, who have placed a $5m bounty on his head and is listed on the FBI's Most Wanted Terrorists list.

"We were forced to fight in self defence and killed three and wounded others," he wrote in a message on Twitter, posted late on Monday.

"May not find another chance to Tweet but just remember what we said and what we stood for. God kept me alive to deliver the message to the ummah [community]."

Hamami, 28, moved to Somalia in 2006 and began to work for Shabaab recruiting young trainees through his English-language rap songs and videos, but later split from the main wing of the Shabaab.

"They raided our houses and took our stuff, and said they found condoms, alcohol, and documents," he added, writing from an undisclosed location in Somalia. "Their goal is to kill us regardless of reason."

Last week he claimed a Shabaab gunmen tried to assassinate him while he was drinking tea in a cafe, posting a photograph of himself dripping with blood from where he said the pistol bullet grazed his throat.

"They are sending forces from multiple directions," he wrote last week. "We are few but might get back up."

Born in 1984 to a Syrian Muslim father and a white Protestant mother, Hamami was raised as a Christian but began to feel estranged from his upbringing as teenager before moving to Somalia.

"'I'm on a mission from God', minus the blues music", he wrote last week, an apparent reference to the 1980 Blues Brothers film, an American musical comedy.



Read News24’s Comments Policy

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Read more from our Users

Submitted by
Victor Tinto
Leave ODM if you are unhappy, Rai...

Leave ODM if you are not happy, Raila Odinga tells Senator. Read more...

Submitted by
Victor Tinto
Former Assistant Minister joins J...

A former Assistant Minister has quit PNU and joined the Jubilee Party. Read more...

Submitted by
Victor Tinto
DP Ruto intervenes as Kerio Valle...

DP William Ruto will visit Kerio Valley to try solve never-ending clashes between local residents. Read more...

Submitted by
Wilson Ochieng
ODM MP chased down by angry Kibra...

Kibra MP Ken Okoth had a hard time in his constituency after angry youth pelted him with stones. Read more...

Submitted by
Wilson Ochieng
Prepare for DP Ruto fight in 2022...

An MP has warned that the Kalenjin Community will not stand back and watch as DP Ruto is duped ahead of the 2022 polls. Read more...

Submitted by
William Korir
Be careful who you deal with, DP ...

Watch out for your political future, DP William Ruto has been warned. Read more...