Exploring the Ramifications: Somalia Leaders Deliberate Effects of African Union Troops Leaving

Somalia authorities discuss impact of AU troops' withdrawal

In Mogadishu, Federal and State leaders are analyzing the effects of the African Union Transition Mission in Somalia (ATMIS) troops as they pull out of the nation.

At least 5,000 ATMIS soldiers have departed so far under the Somali Transition Plan (STP), with another 5,000 scheduled to leave by June 2024. The remaining troops are expected to exit by December 2024, transferring security duties to the Somali National Army (SNA).

In Dhusamareb, regional state ministers for security and police met with central government officials to address post-ATMIS exit and overall security restructuring.

Somalia’s Interior Minister Abdullahi Sheikh Ismail Faratag expressed the importance of enhancing police forces at both federal and state levels during the two-day meeting. Effective collaboration between security ministries and police commands is essential to meet national security objectives.

Since the start of 2023, ATMIS police have trained 1,101 Somali Police Force (SPF) officers nationwide, including 193 female officers.

ATMIS recently handed over nine military bases to the Somali government, completing the second phase of troop withdrawal from the country. The June departure will see an additional 5,000 soldiers exit.

With a predominantly Kenyan, Ugandan, Burundian, Djiboutian, and Ethiopian force, ATMIS has played a crucial role in combating Al-Shabaab in central and southern Somalia, resulting in the elimination of thousands of militants.

The initial phase of operations against al-Shabab saw the deaths of over 3,000 militants, with some surrendering in Hirshabelle and Galmudug states. The next phase will target Jubaland and Southwest states.

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