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Somalia urges AU to scale up anti-terrorism fight to flash out militants

Hiiraan Online
Sunday, January 3, 2016

MOGADISHU (HOL) – Somalia’s government says it wants to pool resources with the African Union to ramp up military operations against the Al-Qaeda militants group in Somalia which continues attacks against the government and African Union forces.

Led by the African Union forces (AMISOM) The multi-pronged offensive against the areas still under Al-Shabab control was halted mid last year, giving Al-Shabab more freedom to organize guerrilla attacks and recaptured towns and villages across Somalia.

Having held security talks with the incoming AMISOM force commander Gen. Mohammedesha Zeyinu, Somalia’s defence minister Abdiqadir Sheikh Ali said that Somali government wants to see the anti-militants offensive resumed to oust militants from the areas still under their control in 2016, a year Somalia proposed to hold presidential elections.

“The operation aims to oust the anti-peace elements from the country in a very short period of time.” Ali told reporters Saturday.

The offensive dubbed ‘Indian Ocean’ was halted after Al-Shabab fighters launched multiple deadly attacks including two complex attacks on the African Union military bases that killed dozens of
soldiers few months ago. The attackers have also looted the bases.

The offensive which saw troops recaptured several strongholds from Al-Shabab was halted despite the adoption of the United Nations Security Council 2014 resolution that provided logistical and fund for
additional troops deployed in January this year to bolster AMISOM which would enable the joint forces to launch fresh operations.


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