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UK trains over 100 Somali soldiers

BAIDOA (SD) – British Army has trained 113 Somali soldiers in Somalia’s Southwest state, UK government confirmed Thursday.

In a statement, UK said the latest batch obtained the essential infantry skills they need to combat armed groups and ensure security and stability in the country.

The graduation ceremony was held on 13st December in Baidoa, according to UK government which runs the base.

Ben Fender OBE, British Ambassador to Somalia expressed UK’s commitment to training the Somali National Army in Baidoa.

“In (last) September, we ran a course for headquarters staff in how to plan and run operations, and this week are graduating another infantry company (of 113 soldiers). We expect to train a new company around every eight weeks next year, and to complete our training of 8 Brigade by the end of 2021,” he said.

The contingent are the fifth Somali company trained by Britain since the course was rolled out in the country in September 2019.

The UK has also provided the SNA with military vehicles to support security operations and a new barracks in Baidoa that can accommodate 450 troops.

Minister for the Armed Forces James Heappey said the milestone shows Britain’s ongoing commitment to help Somalia provide security and stability for its people, while combating terrorist groups.

“The United Kingdom and our Armed Forces will continue to support Somalia, with plans to double the number of troops trained under this scheme in 2021,” he said.

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