7 Jul 2011

Ban on foreign aid agencies lifted by rebels

6:03 am on 7 July 2011

Rebels in Somalia have lifted a ban on foreign aid agencies amid the worst drought in 60 years in the Horn of Africa.

Al-Shabab imposed the ban in 2009, accusing them of being anti-Muslim.

It now says all charities, whether ''Muslims or non-Muslims'', can give emergency aid as long as they have ''no hidden agenda''.

However, aid agencies have been told to pay a hefty registration fee.

Al Shabaab supports al Qaeda and controls central and southern parts of the country.

The BBC reports an estimated 12 million people in the Horn of Africa have been hit by this year's drought.