United States message that it is sending dozens of troops to Somalia to train forces fighting Islamist group al-Shabab has boosted the morale of African troops fighting to stop the savagery carnage of innocent people in Somalia and neighbouring countries.
By Malcolm Rice
On Thursday April 6, 2017, a land mine explosion killed at least 19 passengers of a minibus in Somalia while the minibus was travelling in the southern Lower Shebelle region when it ran over the explosive device near the village of Golweyn, about 120km from the capital Mogadishu in an area contested between al-Shabab and government and African Union troops.
According to BBC, this is the first time regular US troops have been deployed in Somalia since 1994, although some counter-terrorism advisers are already there. President Donald Trump last month approved a directive allowing tougher action against al-Shabab.
Kenyan and African peacekeeping (AMISOM) troops have advanced and taken rebel strongholds but al-Shabab continue to cause so much human suffering and destruction of properties in Somalia and threatening security in neighbouring countries.
The Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) officially labeled al-Shabab militants as a transnational security threat in the East Africa region. This view was contained in the IGAD’s report titled Al-Shabaab as a Transnational Security Treat. The report likens al-Shabab to the Islamic State group, with capablities to recruit young people beyond its power base. The report stated that al-Shabab (real name Harakaat Al-Shabaab Al-Mujaahidiiin) had long been perceived as a Somali-organization even though it represented a threat to the wider East African region.
Somali President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed ‘Farmaajo’ on Thursday promised to rid Mogadishu of Al-Shabaab militants who have continued to kill and maim innocent civilians in the capital city.
Speaking during the Somali National Army (SNA) 57th-anniversary celebrations held in Mogadishu, President Farmaajo asked the militants to take advantage of the amnesty issued recently, warning that those continuing to commit acts of terror will face the full force of the government.
The statement by the United States has once again provided hope for the region and the whole of Africa which struggles to free itself from terrorist activities stagnating the continent’s development prospects.
“We will look nowhere. We will use the same tactics that we used in the past and we will liberate the country with the capability of our troops,” President Farmaajo said at the function attended by top military and government officials, senior African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) officers led by Force Commander, Lt. General Osman Noor Soubagleh, and representatives of the international community.