NELSON DIRECTOR TO GIVE CONGRESSIONAL TESTIMONY ON SOMALI CRISIS

June 26, 2006

HARRISONBURG—Dr. J. Peter Pham, director of the Nelson Institute for International and Public Affairs at James Madison University, will testify at a congressional oversight hearing on “Somalia: Expanding Crisis in the Horn of Africa” to be held Thursday, June 29, 2006, by the United States House of Representatives Committee on International Relations’ Subcommittees on Africa, Global Human Rights, and International Operations and International Terrorism and Nonproliferation.

Dr. Pham, who authored a widely discussed Wall Street Journalop-ed last week on the threat posed by the Islamist militants who seized control of the Somali capital of Mogadishu earlier this month, has written extensively on terrorism in sub-Saharan Africa. After field work last year in the Horn of Africa, sponsored in part by JMU’s Institute for Infrastructure and Information Assurance, Dr. Pham briefed the Subcommittee on International Terrorism and Nonproliferation on the growing Islamist threat in Somalia, issuing one of the first warnings of what has since transpired.

Dr. Pham’s appearance before the House Committee, his second this year, comes at the invitation of committee chairman, Representative Henry J. Hyde of Illinois. The two subcommittees holding this week’s joint hearing are chaired respectively by Representatives Christopher H. Smith of New Jersey and Edward R. Royce of California.

Also scheduled to testify at the hearing are Dr. Jendayi E. Frazer, Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs, and John Prendergast, co-director of the Africa Program at the International Crisis Group.

The hearing will take place at 2:00 p.m. in Room 2172 of the Rayburn House Office Building.