Page last updated at 17:14 GMT, Thursday, 5 November 2009

Saudi lifts Somali livestock ban

Somali cattle-herder (file photo)
Many Somalis earn their living by looking after animals

Saudi Arabia has lifted a ban on the import of livestock from Somalia imposed nine years ago to prevent the spread of Rift Valley fever.

Somali pastoralists and traders have welcomed the news.

It means they can profit from increased demand for livestock during the Eid al-Adha festival when Muslims traditionally sacrifice an animal.

The export of sheep, goats and cattle is a mainstay of Somalia's economy and Saudi Arabia had been a major market.

The failed Horn of Africa state has not had a functioning central government since 1991.

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