“Kenyan Armed Forces Revamp Somali Airstrip in Preparation for Dealing with Al-Shabaab: What’s Happening Next?!”

The Kenya Defence Forces [KDF], under the African Union Transition Mission in Somalia [ATMIS], have begun perplexing renovations at Dhobley Airstrip, a vital landing area for planes utilized by military personnel and aid teams in Western Somalia, located in Lower Jubba. These perplexing renovations come merely days after President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud declared that the second phase of operations against the notorious terrorist group Al-Shabaab would take effect in Jubbaland and Southwest states, where Kenyan troops are actively involved. The KDF has initiated the process by expanding the width of the airstrip, clearing heaps of sand, and reinforcing the ground by filling and compacting it. Additionally, the KDF has taken measures to clear shrubs surrounding the airstrip to ease the landing process for planes and other aircraft. Within Somalia, air transportation is the most desirable means of travel due to Al-Shabaab’s insecurity and the country’s deteriorated road infrastructure. Dhobley is Sector II’s headquarters of the ATMIS troops, serving a broader area within Western Somalia as per the mission’s troops.

“This renovation of the Dhobley airstrip is essential to restoring the transportation of people and goods for this significant region. It will guarantee safe and effective travel, contribute and enhance socio-economic development that will positively impact local communities, foster peace, and increase stability in the region,” stated the ATMIS Sector Two Commander, Brigadier William Kamoiro, who commissioned the renovated airstrip. The impetus given to trading activities in Dhobley and the neighboring towns is a significant boost, with flights once again operating on the airstrip. The Jubbaland state, under Ahmed Islam Mohamed Madobe, has also assisted renewed expansion and renovation of Dhobley Airstrip. The Somali National Army [SNA] is likely to receive support from troops deployed in Sector II and Sector VI in flushing out Al-Shabaab militants from the region. According to the Somali government, the Al-Shabaab terrorist group underwent substantial losses during the first phase, with several towns being liberated.

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