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Rwanda trains Somali soldiers

The Rwandan government has finalized training of Somali troops that will help serve in returning peace to that war ravaged state, APA learns here Tuesday.

 

According to the spokesperson of the Rwanda Defense Forces, Major Jill Rutaremara, the newly trained Somali military personnel are ready for deployment.

 

“It is true that we have just concluded training the Somali troops that we received as part of our effort in ensuring that the war ravaged country returns to peace,” he said.

 

He told APA on Tuesday that this contingent will back up the national army that is supporting the transitional government to end conflict.

 

“We are waiting for transport/logistics to make sure that these Somali troops still camping in Kigali are airlifted to their motherland,” Rutaremara said.

 

He said the soldiers are ready to be dispatched as soon as the transport means are availed.

 

The RDF spokesperson, however, was cagey to divulge the number of Somali troops trained in Rwanda, saying, “the issue of numbers is still exclusive information for the army”.

 

However, military sources say Kigali has trained quite a substantive number ; about two battalions of over 1,000 troops.

 

The announcement comes at a time when the Ethiopian troops in Somalia have increasingly become unpopular, despite Ethiopian Prime Minister Meles Zenawi’s acknowledgment that his troops cannot withdraw under the circumstances.

 

Mr. Meles said while he had expected to withdraw his soldiers earlier in the year, after Islamists had been driven out of the Somali capital, Mogadishu, but that divisions within the Somali government had left it unable to replace the Ethiopians, while not enough African Union peacekeepers had arrived to replace them.

 

About 60% of Mogadishu residents have fled clashes in the city, the UN says.

 

The Ethiopians intervened a year ago to oust the Union of Islamic Courts, which had taken control of much of southern Somalia. Their presence, however, is unpopular in Mogadishu and earlier this month ; insurgents dragged the bodies of Ethiopian troops through the city.

 

Meanwhile, Rwanda is optimistic that the new Somali contingent from Kigali would add some strength to the country’s military muscle hence changing the situation, at least for the better.

 

Source: APA News, November 28, 2007

 
16 comment(s)
More comments  
    Mukhtarmjama @ 11/29/2007 4:03 AM EST
 correction: the answer is no, Ethiopia will never allow us to have any army while we are under its brutal occupation. The occupation is one year old, what have they done, destroy what is left of Somalia like education institutions, medical facilities, kill professional people, kill independent minded journalists. Furthermore they collected warlord milita and asked them to kill and rob people without any consequence. I am sure you will one day know that Ethiopia is our enemy, but it will be too late to do something abut it. Brave Somali people boys and girls are fighting this occupatoion, and they deserve out appreciation.
    Mukhtarmjama @ 11/29/2007 3:58 AM EST
 I agree Somli republic had very strong army, one of the strongest in Africa. However, now Somalia is under occupation of the same people that our army is meant to defend us from. Do you honestly think that Meles is helping us to build strong us? Will Ethiopians allow us to build strong army? The answer is yes. Somalia is under occupation, first things first, we must liberate our countr. Second get rid of the traitors who are working for the occupation, then we can start building strong army. In the futute if Ethiopian government tries to invade Somalia a lesson can be tought. Geele, I can see that you have some sense of nationalism, but unfortunately you are blinded by narrow lan interest. Remember, Ethiopia will never allow us to have an army while we are under its occupation.
    Geele123 @ 11/28/2007 7:45 PM EST
 THANK YOU RWANDA, Help on Somalia’s hour of vulnerability will never be forgetten
SOMALI NATIONAL ARMY SNA, WERE MOST FEARED AND RESPECTED PROFISIONAL ARMY IN SUB-SAHARA AFRIKA IN THE 70'S
IT TOOK US ONLY 15 YEARS TO BUILD SUCH ARMY FROM 1960-1975, WITH 95% ILETRATE POPULATION
GOD WILLING TODAY WONT TAKE US HALF OF THAT TIME TO REACH THAT GLORY ONCE AGAIN
STRONG UNITED PROUD SOMALIA CAN ONLY BE ACCOMPILSHED IF ANTI-LAW AND ORDER THUGS STOP SENSELESS WAR AGAINST TFG
HEESTII KACAANKA

WAXAN AHAY SOOMAALI, MANA OGOLI INUU SANKU NEEFLE IGA SAREEYO
    Arraweelo10 @ 11/28/2007 4:06 PM EST
 Thank you Rwanda and I welcome stronger well trained Somali army, that is what we need.
    nomadic1 @ 11/28/2007 3:43 PM EST
 One of the best ways to counter the violence and endless suffering in our society is to train and enrich our national force. We all aught to respect them.
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