AU mission positions troops across Somalia ahead of exit

by admin | Tuesday, Nov 7, 2017 | 109 views

The African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM)
said it is undertaking a series of troop movements, aimed at re-aligning
contingent compositions in various forward operation bases across Somalia
as part of exit strategy.

The Special Representative of the Chairperson of the African Union
Commission (SRCC) for Somalia, Francisco Caetano Madeira, said the
strategic troop movements will continue, without disrupting the provision
of the existing security services. Madeira said in a statement released on
Saturday night that the re-alignment of the troop composition will ensure
the safety of the people of Somalia, who remain at the core of AMISOM’s
operational consideration. “The realignment of our troops in forward
operating bases across the sectors including the movement of Ethiopian
military contingents who are currently seen crossing the border from and
into Somalia, represents calculated activities, in readiness for the
transitioning of security responsibilities to the Somali National Security
Forces,” he said.

AMISOM has kicked off plans to exit the Horn of Africa nation by training
the local security officers. The Pan-African body’s mission will reduce
its troops by 1,000 by December, followed by further cuts next year, an
exercise expected to end by 2020 as part of its exit strategy. However,
AMISOM’s exit is also pegged on the ability of the Somali National Security
Forces, particularly the SNA to ably take over the security of the
country. Madeira lauded the Somali security forces for their determination
and focus in completing all training and ensuring they are prepared to
assume security responsibilities over territories that are currently
secured by AMISOM. The UN Security Council Resolution 2372 (2017) calls for
a gradual, conditions-based, withdrawal of AMISOM troops from Somalia,
following an intensive training and upskilling of Somalia’s National
Security Forces. – XINHUA 

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