[Adan] In a press statement issued to media organizations, Al- Shabab said investigations into operations of the Mogadishu airport had revealed that the airport is being used as base by enemy troops from Uganda and militias of the Transitional Federal Government of Somalia [TFG]. The Al-Shabab said the airport is also being used to ferry AMISOM [African Union Mission in Somalia] troops from Uganda, Burundi and other countries. Al-Shabab also said the airport is being used to transport foreign soldiers injured or killed in fighting in Mogadishu and southern Somalia.
Al-Shabab further said that income generated from the Mogadishu airport is being managed by the head of Ethiopian troops in Somalia and used to fund the Ethiopian troops in the country.
Al-Shabab added that the airport is also being used by American and Israeli intelligence officers and, based on these findings, the Mogadishu airport is will remain closed starting next Tuesday the 16 of Ramadhan 1429 [16 September 2008]. Al-Shabab said from then on, all planes landing at the Mogadishu airport will be viewed as working for foreign troops in the country. Al-Shabab said the ban comes in effect on Tuesday midnight [2100 gmt].
The Mogadishu airport is used by commercial and cargo airlines. The airport is also used by government officials and officials of AU troops in Somalia.