The Issa (Somali: Ciise, Arabic: عيسى) are a Somali clan, a sub-clan of the Dir. The Issa primarily reside in Djibouti, the extreme northwestern fringe in theAwdal district of Somaliland in northern Somalia, as well as the Shinile Zone located in the Somali Region of Ethiopia.
The Issa traditionally traces its Arabian connexions through its Dir affiliations to Aqeel ibn Abi Talib. However, by 1962 it had become the practice to regard the clan founder as a sheikh or even saint in much the same way (and no doubt at least partly in response to their claims) as the eponyms of the Darod andIsaaq clans. Although I.M. Lewis knows of no printed hagiologies in honor of the Issa ancestor, by the time of Lewis's writing a number of hymns (orqasiidas) have been composed for him, and there is a shrine in Djibouti City where he is said to have appeared miraculously. His actual grave lies close to that of Sheikh Ishaq ibn Ahmad al- Hashimi, in northeastern Somalia.
There is no clear agreement on the clan and sub-clan structures and many lineages are omitted. The following listing is taken from the World Bank's Conflict in Somalia: Drivers and Dynamics from 2005 and the United Kingdom's Home Office publication, Somalia Assessment 2001.
In the south central part of Somalia the World Bank shows the following clan tree:
- Habar Je'lo
- Habar Awal
- Habar Tol