Protests in Somalia Against Shabab, a Militant Islamic Group - NYTimes.com "MOGADISHU, Somalia - Hundreds of enraged protesters marched through the streets of Mogadishu on Monday to protest against the Shabab, a militant Islamist insurgent group, in one of the largest demonstrations in recent years. ....................... The Shabab recently dug up at least seven graves of renowned Sufi clerics, according to Somali media reports. In 2008, the Shabab desecrated the graves of renowned Sufi clerics in areas under their control, pushing Sufi followers to take up arms. The Sufi version of Islam, which is more mystical and centered on an “inner jihad,” is one of the more popular sects in Somalia. ....................... The recent grave desecrations in some of Mogadishu’s neighborhoods seemed to make more people turn against the Shabab, who were already losing popular support because of their harsh interpretations of Islam. The Shabab and their allies control more than half of south-central Somalia and have amputated the hands of thieves, stoned adulterers and flogged women for not being fully veiled. They have also killed many civilians, including students, with suicide bombs, and have recruited foreigners, including Americans, to fight for them."