The European Union cuts Kenya’s military funding in Somalia
NAIROBI, Kenya – The European Union has cut off Kenya’s defense forces [KDF] Somalia’s budget by nearly half, giving further indication of the imminent exit of AMISOM troops from the Horn of Africa nation, which still grapples with the threat of Al-Shabaab.
This will pave the way for the exit of FDK troops serving in AMISOM, and subsequent repositioning on the Kenya-Somalia border which stretches with Jubaland State and the northeastern part of the country. There are nearly 3,500 KDF soldiers in AMISOM.
The KDF first joined the fight against Al-Shabaab as part of Operation Linda Nchi in 2011, but a year later joined the AMISOM team. Since then, the European Union has been one of the main financiers along with the UN and other stakeholders.
The Treasury told parliament on Monday that Kenya received $ 45 million from the African Union Mission in Somalia (Amisom) during the 12-month period to June 2019, against a target of $ 85 million. dollars. This now means that the EU has started the formal withdrawal process.
The reduction was linked to the partial withdrawal of Kenyan troops who were deployed to Somalia in 2007 to defend the internationally backed government against attacks against the Shabaab.
“The amount received was based on the number of troops actually deployed in Somalia. In July 2018, the number of soldiers was then reduced, ”said Julius Muia, Principal Secretary of the Treasury (PS), without disclosing the actual figures.
EU funds cover the allowances of Amisom troops and police, the salaries of international and local civilian staff, the operational costs of their offices, among others. The EU has been the main contributor.
The international community pays $ 1,028 (Sh111, 229) for each soldier per month, their respective governments then deduct about $ 200 (Sh21,640) for administrative costs, leaving them a gain of about $ 800 (Sh86,560).
Al Shabaab carries out frequent assaults in Kenya, mainly in the Somali border region, to pressure the Kenyan government to withdraw its peacekeepers from Somalia.
AMISOM Sectors KDF II and VI in Somalia, which extend over most parts of Jubaland. The KDF team drove al-Shabaab out of Kismayo, the regional administrative capital of Jubaland in 2012.