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ICG warns against AMISOM withdrawal from Somalia

Mogadishu (SD) – The International Crisis Group (ICG) has warned that the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) to withdraw its troops from Somalia, without other security forces to take over for them.

A statement from the agency said it was deeply concerned about the uncertainty surrounding the future of AMISOM troops as the mission ends on December 31, 2021.

The ICG says al-Shabaab could take over the whole of Somalia if AMISOM troops withdrew from Somalia without sufficient troops to defend the country.

“A hasty withdrawal would embolden Al-Shabaab’s Islamist insurgency and could plunge the country into chaos. But donors are increasingly reluctant to bankroll a mission that has made little progress against militants over recent years.” the ICG report said.

The ICG called for a review of the move, which it said would have an impact on Somalia and the continent as a whole.

The organisation’s report indicated donors supporting AMISOM want to restructure and reduce troop numbers, while the AU and troop-contributing countries are looking for reliable funding and to expand the mission.

“The UN Security Council should extend AMISOM’s mandate by six months. AMISOM’s partners should use that time to make a reconfiguration plan that contemplates a five-year horizon; seek funding from the UN, African Union and others to address shortfalls; and encourage reconciliation between Mogadishu and its domestic adversaries.” the ICG report said.

The ICG recommended an additional six months for the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) so that AMISOM partners could then prepare a five-year reform plan.


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