ATMIS Implements September Workforce Reduction of 3,000 After Smooth Transfer to Somali Government
Tuesday August 29, 2023
MOGADISHU — Discussions are currently underway between representatives from the African Union, Somalia, and the United Nations regarding the upcoming stage of troop withdrawal for ATMIS, scheduled for September. The African Union Transition Mission in Somalia (ATMIS) plans to decrease its forces by 3,000 in the coming month, building upon their previous successful reassignment of 2,000 soldiers and the handover of six military bases to the Somali government in June.
Mohammed El-Amine Souef, who serves as the Special Representative of the African Union Commission in Somalia and as the head of ATMIS, highlighted the ongoing careful planning process. “As we continue our combat operations, we are strategically withdrawing in a manner that safeguards our accomplishments,” stated Souef in a statement released from Mogadishu.
Souef commended the longstanding partnership between the United Nations and Somali officials, which played a crucial role in the success of the initial phase.
Aisa Kirabo Kacyira, the Head of UNSOS, stressed the importance of conducting a thorough assessment of the equipment and logistical support handed over to the Somali forces. “The UN’s responsibility is to ensure that the equipment is in excellent condition and that the Somali forces are adequately prepared for its utilization,” noted Kacyira.
According to the provisions of UN Security Council Resolution 2687 (2023), a technical review led by the African Union and Somalia will be completed by the end of August. This review will evaluate the progress made during the initial withdrawal, and detailed findings are anticipated to be released by September 15. In accordance with Resolutions 2628 and 2670, ATMIS is scheduled for a gradual reduction in troops, culminating in a complete departure from Somalia by the conclusion of 2024.