Somalia: Collaborative Efforts to Coordinate Counter-Operations Against Al-Shabaab

Somalia: Collaborative Efforts To Coordinate Counter-operations Against Al-shabaab

The federal government of Somalia is set to establish a Joint Command to coordinate operations against the Al-Shabaab militants, according to the National Consultative Council (NCC). It is hoped that with the activation of military activities, the group will be defeated in the coming months.

In June 2022, Somalia conducted the first phase of operations against Al-Shabaab, resulting in the death of over 3,000 fighters and critical injuries to more than 3,500 others. The Joint Command Structure will bring together members of the Somali National Army (SNA), the US Africa Command, and the African Union Transition Mission in Somalia (ATMIS) who have been working together in the fight against Al-Shabaab.

Earlier this year, President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud announced that Kenya, Djibouti, and Ethiopia had agreed to deploy non-ATMIS troops to assist the frontlines. However, their participation in the second phase of operations against Al-Shabaab is yet to be confirmed.

The focus of the second phase will be on Jubaland and Southwest states, where Al-Shabaab has had a stronghold for a long time. Ahead of military activities, hundreds of soldiers have been deployed. Al-Shabaab has also been carrying out retaliatory attacks in different parts of Somalia.

After losing control of the Oswein village, the Al-Shabaab militants returned and inflicted losses on the Somali National Army, raising questions about the army’s preparedness. The foreign military has been effective in both aerial surveillance and ground combat.

During the NCC meeting, it was agreed to align the current operations with the national counter-terrorism strategy. The NCC also committed to accelerating preparations for the offensive, which will move south to the west, covering parts of HirShabelle and Jubaland states.

Top commanders from the Kenya Defence Forces have expressed readiness to join operations in Jubaland, as Kenya has been closely working with Jubaland in the fight against Al-Shabaab.

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