Wednesday February 10, 2016
By Fred Mukinda
Armoured Personnel Carriers (APCs) heading to Likoni ferry on February 22, 2015 to be shipped to Mogadishu, Somalia, to beef up Amisom forces. Military bosses of countries with troops in Somalia are meeting in Nairobi to strategise on how to fight Al-Shabaab. PHOTO | LABAN WALLOGA
Military chiefs from the countries contributing troops in Somalia are in Nairobi to discuss strengthening in their forces in the war-torn country.
Military action is expected to be stepped up ahead of elections to be organised by the federal government later this year.
African Union Mission in Somalia (Amisom) head Francisco Madeira praised Kenya and other countries for helping the fragile administration to build Somalia after more than 20 years without a government.
“I would like to pay tribute and acknowledge the efforts of all our soldiers and police officers in the ranks of Amisom, who, in very trying circumstances, are presently holding the Pan-African banner and fighting Al-Shabaab with courage, dedication and enormous personal sacrifice. I thank these are living African heroes,” he said.
Kenya joined Amisom in February 2012, months after sending its troops to Somalia to fight Al-Shabaab.
The other countries have been serving under Amisom since 2007.
Chief of Defence Forces Samson Mwathethe represented Kenya in Amisom’s military operations coordination committee.
The event was also attended by Commissioner for Peace and Security at the African Union Commission Smail Chergui and acting Amisom force commander Mohammedesha Zeyinu.
A similar meeting was held in Addis Ababa on September 1, last year.