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AMISOM, acknowledges that their soldiers killed civilians

Mogadishu (SD) – The African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) said a preliminary investigation revealed that seven people who were recently killed by their forces in Golweyn area of Lower Shabelle region were civilians and not members of Al-Shabaab as previously announced by AMISOM.

A statement from AMISOM said the incident was being investigated and the perpetrators would be held accountable.

“AMISOM is investigating reports that its troops were responsible for the death of the seven. The leadership has since the incident met with the elders, community members and government officials and made it clear that they will not condone criminal activities against civilians by its soldiers. They also assured them of their commitment to identifying and punishing those who breach the rules of engagement.” Said AMISOM.

Relatives of those killed have refused to bury the dead until AMISOM admitted to killing their relatives.

“AMISOM remains steadfastly committed to peace and security and the protection of the local population. The Mission leadership is deeply committed to carrying out its mandated tasks in Somalia in strict compliance with its obligations under the applicable International Humanitarian Law (IHL), Human Rights law and its Rules of Engagement.” Said AMISOM.

AMISOM’s announcement comes as the Somali government has appointed a ministerial-level committee to investigate the killing, and the committee is scheduled to meet with senior officials of the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) today.

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