Hodan Naleyeh in a photo posted to Instagram on April 30, 2019, after moving back to Somalia in time for Ramadan. Naleyeh was killed, alongside her husband Farid Jama Suleiman and 24 others. Somalia’s al-Shabab Islamic rebels have claimed responsibility for the attack. (Hodan Naleyeh/Instagram)

Somali-Canadian journalist Hodan Naleyeh dies in Somalia extremist attack

Nalayeh was born in Somalia in 1976, but spent most of her life in Edmonton and then in Toronto

At least 26 people have been killed in an extremist attack in Somalia including a prominent Somali-Canadian journalist and her husband.

Mogadishu-based independent radio station Radio Dalsan confirmed to The Associated Press that Hodan Nalayeh and Farid Jama Suleiman died in the attack Friday.

A Somali official says the attack started with a suicide car bomb blast and then gunmen stormed a hotel in the port city of Kismayo. The official says those killed include one Canadian, one Briton two Americans three Kenyans and three Tanzanians. Fifty-six people, including two Chinese, were also injured in the attack.

Global Affairs Canada has not confirmed the deaths but says it is aware of a bombing in Somalia and is working to get more information.

Ahmed Hussen, Canada’s minister of immigration, refugees and citizenship, expressed his grief on Twitter.

He says through her work as a journalist, Hodan highlighted the (Somali) community’s positive stories and contributions in Canada.

“She became a voice for many,” said Hussen, who is also the former national president of the Canadian Somali Congress.

“We mourn her loss deeply, and all others killed in the #KismayoAttack.”

READ MORE: Northern Ireland journalist is killed; police hunt suspects

Nalayeh was born in Somalia in 1976, but spent most of her life in Canada, first in Edmonton and then in Toronto.

The Somali Journalists Syndicate says Naleyeh was the producer, presenter and founder of Integration TV.

It says she had recently returned to Somalia from Canada, where she attended school and worked as a journalist on TV programs in Toronto.

Ontario NDP Leader Andrea Horwath says she is sad and shocked to hear about her death.

“I am so sad and shocked to learn of the tragic death of @HodanTV and her husband Farid in a terrorist attack, along with other victims of this hate-fuelled violence,” Horwath said on Twitter.

“Hodan’s endless positivity and her love for people was inspiring.”

Nalayeh’s Integration TV program launched in 2014. During its run she interviewed guests including former Ontario premier Kathleen Wynne.

She was also the founder of the Somali Refugees Awareness Project, a non-profit organization that advocates for Somali refugees across the world.

Nalayeh was the mother of two boys.

On one of her social media accounts she described herself as: “Mom. Optimist. Journalist. TV Host.”

“Passionate about sharing #Somali stories.”

Somalia’s al-Shabab Islamic rebels have claimed responsibility for the attack.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Central Alberta naturalists fear pristine headwaters will be contaminated by coal mine

Chutes of the Ram constitute one of Earth’s ‘most beautiful’ spots

Every Albertan eligible for COVID-19 testing

22 new cases confirmed on Friday

Pastoral Ponderings: What do we do now?

Applies to the pandemic and the story of Jesus

Fast-food restaurants serving up free non-medical masks

Free protection will come in packages of four

Alberta confirms 29 new COVID-19 cases

Of the total 6,955 confirmed cases, 652 are active

VIDEO: Procession to honour Snowbirds Capt. Jennifer Casey comes to Halifax

Snowbirds service member died in a crash in Kamloops one week ago

COVID-19 cancelled their wedding plans, so they married on a B.C. mountaintop

Ceremony was live streamed to friends and family around the world

International student worry about pandemic as decisions loom on travel to Canada

Zohra Shahbuddin is weighing whether to enrol this fall or put off coming to Canada until next year

How finding a ministerial home for CMHC caused ‘madness’ in November

The Canada Mortgage and Housing Corp. manages the national housing strategy

‘What do we do now?’ Labour dispute at Regina refinery nears 6 months

About 700 unionized workers were locked out by refinery owner, Federated Co-operatives Ltd., Dec. 5

Police need more than an unverified tip to avoid drug-case entrapment: top court

Police need more than an unverified tip to avoid drug-case entrapment: top court

N.S. police received warnings in 2011 about man who would become mass killer

N.S. police received warnings in 2011 about man who would become mass killer

Trudeau acknowledges ‘anti-black racism’ in U.S., with ‘work to do in Canada’

Trudeau acknowledges ‘anti-black racism’ in U.S., with ‘work to do in Canada’

Want a mask with your Big Mac? Alberta handing out masks at drive-thrus

Want a mask with your Big Mac? Alberta handing out masks at drive-thrus

Most Read