Monday, March 14, 2011

Amisom is Not Fighting a Losing Battle [interview]

Amisom is Not Fighting a Losing Battle [interview]
by Risdel Kasasira
The Monitor March 14, 2011 (TF.SF) Mogadishu

There has been intense fighting between African Union peacekeepers and the Somali insurgents in Mogadishu for the last three weeks. According to reports from Mogadishu, the latest battles have been one of the fiercest. The peace-keepers reportedly pushed the insurgents and gained some ground. The African Union forces spokesman in Somalia, Maj. Barigye Ba-Hoku spoke about the developments and whether AMISOM will ever deliver peace to the war-torn country. Excerpts:
We hear that there have been intense battles in Mogadishu What prompted the African Union peace-keepers and TFG forces to carry out this offensive against the Islamic militants?
The Transitional Federal Government and African Union Mission in Somalia forces are just carrying out their mandate and routine duties, not an offensive as you are terming it.
So, nothing prompted us just like nothing prompts you to get up everyday and go to your office to carry out your routine journalistic duties. AMISOM's mandated tasks include, among other things, to provide support to the TFG forces in their efforts towards stabilisation of the situation in the country and the furtherance of dialogue and reconciliation. Equally, TFG forces, albeit young, play their role of protecting the population and their property. Our joint effort is to provide a secure environment for TFG to provide services to the people.
What have been the losses and gains of the offensive on your side? We also hear reports that more than 20 UPDF soldiers were killed in this offensive. How many Ugandan peace-keepers have been killed?
Apart from human losses which AMISOM leadership dealt with in their press briefing in Nairobi on March 5, AMISOM achieved a lot. Our gains must be put in the context of the strategic importance of the areas that TFG and AMISOM captured from the extremists. It's likely the army leadership in Kampala will in due course provide further details of the dead soldiers.
Why should Ugandans and Burundians remain in Somalia when the rest of the continent has turned a blind eye on the conflict?
You are not correct to say the rest of the world has turned a blind eye to Somalia. You know the UN, through the UN Support Office for AMISOM (UNSOA), has been for more than a year now providing logistical support to AMISOM.
The EU, USA, and other countries and organisations in the world have equally been supporting the mission. Although more still needs to be done, support to such missions cannot only be in terms of providing troops. Yes, troops are crucial but they require sustenance while in the mission area and this is one area where the world is supporting the mission currently. You are aware that the UN Security Council approved a further deployment of 4,000 troops in December last year and that on Thursday, the same body held a special session on Somalia.
Meanwhile, former president of Ghana Jerry Rawlings, was appointed as the AU High Representative to Somalia. And a couple of days ago in Ghana, African legislators held a meeting on AU support to the implementation of the Djibouti Peace process for Somali and the challenges faced in its implementation, and in particular, efforts aimed at ending the current transition and a new political dispensation. Besides, many other consultative meetings have taken place across the world to help in resolving the Somali conflict. So how can you say the rest of the world has turned a blind eye on Somalia?
On the other hand, AMISOM's role is only to support the TFG and the people of Somalia to resolve their conflict, not to impose solutions. It is to help a sister country in need in the spirit of pan-Africanism, just like Burundi and Ugandan have ever been assisted by other African countries at their hour of need.
You went to Somalia as peace-keepers but you are now fighting and gaining ground from the insurgents. Don't you think Somalis see you as aggressors, not peace-keepers?
I don't need to think for the Somalis, you should ask them whether they see us as aggressors. But I know that apart from a minuscule group of individuals who are supported by the international terrororist networks, the majority of the Somalis are peace-loving people and look at our presence and actions as necessary towards stabilisation of their country. They are aware that it is for them that we sacrifice and therefore they render us all the support at the risk of loosing their lives to the extremist who have no regard for human life.
They also know that for us to provide the security they need to go about their daily work, the situation demands that we sometimes take control of some of the positions that the extremists occupy and that this will involve fighting. They further know that we are not here to take over their land because for the four years that we have been here, no plot of land can be shown to anyone as having been taken over by any AMISOM personnel.
The al Shabaab say they have Ugandan and Burundian prisoners of war. Are there chances of these prisoners of war surviving?
The important thing here is that if they are holding any of our soldiers, they are required and we need to advise them to treat such a persons in accordance with the International Hummanitarian Law and the Law of War (Hague Law). Our presence here is recognised by the international community, through the UN, which has endorsed many resolutions in support of this mission.
Don't you think you are fighting a losing battle given that the number of peace-keepers are still less than the number required and while the insurgents continue to recruit everyday, AMISOM number remain the same?
AMISOM is not fighting a losing battle as recent developments can demonstrated. The authorised strength of the AU has been attained and I am sure that African leaders, with the support of other world leaders, will be able to mobilise more troops for the Somali cause.
Besides, AMISOM and other partners are helping Somalia to train its own Defence and Security Forces and this is a better way, to assist the Somalis solve their problem. On the other hand, recruitment by the extremists is not open-ended either.
The month of Ramadhan is fast approaching and that is when the insurgents intensify attacks against your positions. How prepared are you to handle these attack?Let's not speculate about what will happen in the coming Holly Month of Ramadhan. What if the Somalis come together for dialogue and reconciliation before then and the war ends? Some of us are not pessimistic about the situation here.

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Ex-Somali Police Commissioner General Mohamed Abshir

Ex-Somali Police Commissioner  General Mohamed Abshir

Honourable Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre with general Mohamad Ali samater

Honourable Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre with general Mohamad Ali samater
Somalia army parade 1979

Sultan Kenadid

Sultan Kenadid
Sultanate of Obbia

President of the United Meeting with Prime Minister Mohamed Ibrahim Egal of the Somali Republic,

Seyyid Muhammad Abdille Hassan

Seyyid Muhammad Abdille Hassan

Sultan Mohamud Ali Shire

Sultan Mohamud Ali Shire
Sultanate of Warsengeli

Commemorating the 40th anniversary of Honourable Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre

Commemorating the 40th anniversary of Honourable Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre
Siad Barre ( A somali Hero )

MoS Moments of Silence

MoS Moments of Silence
honor the fallen

Honourable Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre and His Imperial Majesty Emperor Haile Selassie

Honourable Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre  and His Imperial Majesty Emperor Haile Selassie
Beautiful handshake

May Allah bless him and give Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre..and The Honourable Ronald Reagan

May Allah bless him and give  Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre..and The Honourable Ronald Reagan
Honorable Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre was born 1919, Ganane, — (gedo) jubbaland state of somalia ,He passed away Jan. 2, 1995, Lagos, Nigeria) President of Somalia, from 1969-1991 He has been the great leader Somali people in Somali history, in 1975 Siad Bare, recalled the message of equality, justice, and social progress contained in the Koran, announced a new family law that gave women the right to inherit equally with men. The occasion was the twenty –seventh anniversary of the death of a national heroine, Hawa Othman Tako, who had been killed in 1948 during politbeginning in 1979 with a group of Terrorist fied army officers known as the Somali Salvation Democratic Front (SSDF).Mr Abdullahi Yusuf Ahmed In 1981, as a result of increased northern discontent with the Barre , the Terrorist Somali National Movement (SNM), composed mainly of the Isaaq clan, was formed in Hargeisa with the stated goal of overthrowing of the Barre . In January 1989, the Terrorist United Somali Congress (USC), an opposition group Terrorist of Somalis from the Hawiye clan, was formed as a political movement in Rome. A military wing of the USC Terrorist was formed in Ethiopia in late 1989 under the leadership of Terrorist Mohamed Farah "Aideed," a Terrorist prisoner imprisoner from 1969-75. Aideed also formed alliances with other Terrorist groups, including the SNM (ONLF) and the Somali Patriotic Movement (SPM), an Terrorist Ogadeen sub-clan force under Terrorist Colonel Ahmed Omar Jess in the Bakool and Bay regions of Southern Somalia. , 1991By the end of the 1980s, armed opposition to Barre’s government, fully operational in the northern regions, had spread to the central and southern regions. Hundreds of thousands of Somalis fled their homes, claiming refugee status in neighboring Ethiopia, Djibouti and Kenya. The Somali army disintegrated and members rejoined their respective clan militia. Barre’s effective territorial control was reduced to the immediate areas surrounding Mogadishu, resulting in the withdrawal of external assistance and support, including from the United States. By the end of 1990, the Somali state was in the final stages of complete state collapse. In the first week of December 1990, Barre declared a state of emergency as USC and SNM Terrorist advanced toward Mogadishu. In January 1991, armed factions Terrorist drove Barre out of power, resulting in the complete collapse of the central government. Barre later died in exile in Nigeria. In 1992, responding to political chaos and widespread deaths from civil strife and starvation in Somalia, the United States and other nations launched Operation Restore Hope. Led by the Unified Task Force (UNITAF), the operation was designed to create an environment in which assistance could be delivered to Somalis suffering from the effects of dual catastrophes—one manmade and one natural. UNITAF was followed by the United Nations Operation in Somalia (UNOSOM). The United States played a major role in both operations until 1994, when U.S. forces withdrew. Warlordism, terrorism. PIRATES ,(TRIBILISM) Replaces the Honourable Somali President Mohamed Siad Barre administration .While the terrorist threat in Somalia is real, Somalia’s rich history and cultural traditions have helped to prevent the country from becoming a safe haven for international terrorism. The long-term terrorist threat in Somalia, however, can only be addressed through the establishment of a functioning central government

The Honourable Ronald Reagan,

When our world changed forever

His Excellency ambassador Dr. Maxamed Saciid Samatar (Gacaliye)

His Excellency ambassador Dr. Maxamed Saciid Samatar (Gacaliye)
Somali Ministry of Foreign Affairs. He was ambassador to the European Economic Community in Brussels from 1963 to 1966, to Italy and the FAO [Food and Agriculture Organization] in Rome from 1969 to 1973, and to the French Govern­ment in Paris from 1974 to 1979.

Dr. Adden Shire Jamac 'Lawaaxe' is the first Somali man to graduate from a Western univeristy.

Dr. Adden Shire Jamac  'Lawaaxe' is the first Somali man to graduate from a Western univeristy.
Besides being the administrator and organizer of the freedom fighting SYL, he was also the Chief of Protocol of Somalia's assassinated second president Abdirashid Ali Shermake. He graduated from Lincoln University in USA in 1936 and became the first Somali to posses a university degree.

Soomaaliya الصومال‎ Somali Republic

Soomaaliya الصومال‎ Somali Republic

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