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.

Just Posted

Oceanside RCMP auxiliary officer earns top honour for volunteer work

Dally presented special award by Island Commander

Island residents team up on beach cleanups, call for government regulation

‘It’s way beyond what we can deal with’: Lasqueti, Texada, Denman islanders

‘A really kind person’: Parksville’s Nick Major remembered by instructor

Outpouring of support in the days following death of young man

Banners could add pop of colour to Parksville business district

District includes businesses between the Orange Bridge and McVickers Street

Last call for the ever-vanishing payphone in Parksville Qualicum Beach

Where many phones once resided, only memories remain

Rich the Vegan scoots across Canada for the animals

Rich Adams is riding his push scooter across Canada to bring awareness to the dog meat trade in Asia

Nanaimo tubber sets all-time record at bathtub race

Justin Lofstrom completes course in fastest-ever time

A year later, ceremony commemorates victims of the Danforth shooting

It’s the one-year anniversary of when a man opened fire along the bustling street before shooting and killing himself

Japanese Canadians call on B.C. to go beyond mere apology for historic racism

The federal government apologized in 1988 for its racism against ‘enemy aliens’

B.C. VIEWS: NDP pushes ahead with Crown forest redistribution

This isn’t the time for a radical Indigenous rights agenda

Two dead in two-vehicle crash between Revelstoke and Golden

RCMP are investigating the cause of the crash

Ottawa fights planned class action against RCMP for bullying, intimidation

The current case is more general, applying to employees, including men, who worked for the RCMP

Alberta judge denies B.C.’s bid to block ‘Turn Off the Taps’ bill

He said the proper venue for the disagreement is Federal Court

Most Read