KDF Builds Back Once War-Torn Communities In Regions Of Somalia

Locals from Somalia’s Hoosingo and its environs on Monday 11th 2018 received free medical services from the Kenya Defence Force troops. The medical camp put up at the town’s health centre comes days after rains subsided leaving the community at the risk of waterborne diseases. The residents who turned up in masses received treatment as some showed up for routine checkups.

The area was hit by a cholera scare prompting the KDF troops to move in swiftly to mitigate the situation. During the medical camp, three cases were confirmed positive for Cholera and the troops have put necessary measures to avoid any spread.

Ahmed Abdullahi a father of three was in tears as his three-year-old received treatment, he went ahead to narrate how his wife died during an Al Shabaab attack, Ahmed himself suffers from diabetes and also received treatment at the camp. He lauded the security personnel for providing moral support through counselling and availing follow up sessions, which he says have been very helpful since he lost his wife.

As part of building back the community that has been affected by Al Shabaab attacks in the past, KDF troops continue to engage with residents to ensure that normalcy returns to the area. In the spirit of Ramadan, the troops also donated assorted food items to the locals. In appreciation, area councilman Sheikh Noor Mohammed invited the troops to join the villagers during Iftar, (breaking the fast).


Somali President Addresses Kenyans, Calls Out Al Shabaab For Dragging Islam

Somalia president Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo has called out Al Shabaab militants for claiming they are in conflict with non-muslims but in turn killing innocent people who are Muslim.

The Somalia president who made an address during National Prayer breakfast at Safari Park termed the militia ‘enemy of mankind’ for taking out innocent lives at the same time tagging Islam to bloodshed.

Farmajo called on regional states to participate in the fight against violent extremism and acts of terrorism saying that the Al Shabaab militia is a common enemy that should be faced out.

Prior to the gathering, the visiting president held talks with Kenya’s President Uhuru Kenyatta on Wednesday focusing on security issues.

Kenyatta’s office said the two leaders discussed bilateral issues and security matters including the continued support for African Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) in which Kenyan forces play a big role.

“The two leaders updated each other on shared security concerns as well as progress in regional efforts to bring peace and stability back to Somalia with the help of Kenya and other nations,” it said.

President Mohamed arrived in the country early Wednesday accompanied by a high-level delegation of ministers and senior government officials.


Is Al-Shabaab on the verge of defeat?

Recent days have seen Al Shabaab leader Ahmad Umar aka Abu Ubaidah break his long silence in two long audio interviews calling on the middle Eastern Jihadist diaspora. Being the Emir of the Harakat al Shabaab al Mujahideen, he has been the least visible and vocal of the world’s Jihadist Emirs.

Ayman Al Zawahiri’s to whom he has pledged allegiance, is no better. Having been Osama bin Laden’s second in command, he was the terror group’s most visible face, posting frequent audio and video messages and easily the worst most ‘brutal’ leader after Osama.

This changed however, after he came close to death at least four times in US strikes that had him as the main target. Recent reports state that out of the 10 members of the Al Qaeda Shura council that sanctioned the 9/11 attacks, Al Zawahiri is one of only four who are still alive.

He is now in hiding and even resorts to green screen video technology to disguise his exact locations. Somewhat desperate from the once powerful man.

His feud with ISIS leader, Omar al-Baghdadi is also another factor that drastically reduces Al Qaeda’s global influence, and while Al Qaeda is known for some the most horrific attacks in history, Al Zawahiri considers his ISIS counterparts ‘too extreme’; an absolute paradox considering the parties involved. He has gone as far as to declare ISIS as not a ‘rightly guided caliphate’, calling on his supporters to support the Al-Nusra front, Al Qaeda’s affiliate in Syria.

There is a tendency to agree with him however, as Omar al-Baghdadi is now the 57th richest man in the world according to Forbes. These and other factors it seems, have given Al Qaeda and all their affiliates’ some form of chronic inferiority complex, like a terminally wounded gladiator, unable to assert authority in an arena in which they once ruled supreme.

Ahmad Umar’s outfit Al Shabaab continues to suffer the brunt of US, AMISOM and SNA forces as little or no help comes from his Middle Eastern allies, for good reason. Rumours are rife that he is bed ridden and can therefore not perform his normal tasks as emir. If not just a distraction, his call for unity to other Middle Eastern Jihadi movements seems like a desperate attempt to raise dormant passions from persons with way bigger problems than his.

It also works against this almost defunct emir that most of his organisation decry his apparent lack of leadership and charisma as was displayed by his predecessor Ahmed Abdi Godane. You do not need a magician to discern that the Harakat al Shabaab al Mujahideen are headed for a perilous future.

KDF Troops Participate In Community Building In Hoosingo, Somalia

A day after an unfortunate IED attack on an AMISOM convey, KDF troops participated in a Civil-Military Cooperation (CIMIC) in Hoosingo Somalia South Eastern Lower Juba region of Somalia where the troops offered free medical care to residents amid heavy rains rocking most regions in the country.

With fears of disease breakout, among services offered was administering vaccines to the vulnerable residents who have reported mild signs of a possible cholera breakout. The trained KDF personnel were largely answering to dire need of medical care for the residents who lack proper facilitation and expertise.

Pregnant women and children were among those who benefited in the operation that saw over 100 patients attended to. Three women successfully delivered healthy babies and received maternal packages as health support for both the mother and child. Maternal care in this area is non-existence, as the residents have to take long walks or donkey rides to midwives who lack proper facilitation and expertise, which puts the women and infants at risk.

After the medical camp, the troops engaged with the youth in a friendly football match that was preceded with a de-radicalisation and counter terrorism training. The military-civil engagement in the area has been very instrumental in countering al shabaab and rehabilitating the youth in Hoosingo.

Local council elder Abdi Weli condemned the Sunday attack in Dhobley citing that the residents of Hoosingo will not allow Al shabaab to derail the progress that KDF has brought to the region, “Our boys are back to us, our wives and children are healthy and all this I thank KDF” said the elder.

AMISOM trains Somalia Police to enhance collaboration with the public

A one-week training to enhance communication skills of Somali Police officers has opened in the capital, Mogadishu. The training is meant to enhance relations between security officers and the public in a bid to fight violent extremism and insecurity in the country.

It is part of the transition plan, which will eventually see troops withdraw from the country. The plan requires AMISOM to prepare Somalia’s national security institutions to take over the country’s security once AMISOM’s mandate comes to an end.

The agreement also entails incorporating public members in security operations. Also in the agreement is to make deploy government militia in regions of Somalia to ensure seamless security operations across the country.

During the training, the participants will be taken through a range of topics including, among others, fostering relations between the police and the media; social media as a tool of information dissemination; public relations and media awareness and practice. 

Others are how to consolidate partnerships between the police and the community; drafting key messages and information dissemination and the role of public relations in conflict resolution.


AMISOM Troops Rescue Flood Victims In Somalia

AMISOM troops in Somalia have reported thousands of evacuations of flood victims in Somalia. The troops that were among the first responders following the flash and river flooding in Hirshabelle, South West and Jubaland states as well as Banadir region have engaged necessary equipment on the ground as destruction of the heavy rains is evident.

The troops that include the Kenya Defense Forces have set up medical camps in designated areas to curb potential disease breakouts. With the help of the trained personnel, women have received aid while giving birth in the unbearable environment.

Doctors are also taking proactive measures by administering vaccines to victims in anticipation of hazardous diseases. The peacekeepers are also attending to children and elderly people both medically and psychologically.

As displaced families struggle with the situation, the troops in conjunction with other aid agencies are also transporting the victims to safe areas. Residents have hailed the forces for their responsiveness and provision of basic needs like food and clothing.
Residents of Belet Weyne are among the worst hit, after river Shabelle, which originates in Ethiopian Highlands, burst its banks leaving many homeless and without a source of livelihood.

Al Shabaab deaths

The ongoing flash floods have swept away the Al Shabaab camps leaving them with no operational bases. The little and diminishing resources they possessed was washed away as some of their fighters continue to perish following the floods.

Residents who were held captive by the Al Shabaab militia for forceful indoctrination were fortunate enough to be freed and they narrated horrid tales of what happens in those camps. A notable event is how the militia group murdered its own fighters.

The Al Shabaab leaders held captive of other militants claiming that letting them go would lead to a tip off of the group’s plans and whereabouts to security agencies. The security agencies are however on vigil to restrain militants from mingling with civilians during evacuation

Al Shabaab Blocking Humanitarian Assistance In Somalia

Al-Shabaab an Islamic militant group grappling to stay in control in the small pockets of southern Somalia, is making it difficult for international aid groups to deliver humanitarian assistance in Somalia by controlling and restricting movement in and out of those areas and worse by threatening the locals from engaging with the humanitarian groups.

The militia are also not allowing the farmers do any cultivation in their lands and therefore locals cannot sustain themselves. There is a huge humanitarian crisis in southern Somalia after the long prolonged drought period followed by the heavy rains now pounding the country that has left tens of thousands of people dead, mostly children and women.

The militia group is becoming extremely paranoid against international groups further making the lives of the locals miserable. They have resorted to erecting checkpoints and extorting absurd amount of money from the truck drivers who at times are unable to pay, the militants will then steal the load for their own consumption. “They extort money from every vehicle passing certain routes making it difficult for the International Humanitarians NGOs to cope with their demands” said one truck driver.

The locals are lamenting against the militants’ action and are calling on AMISOM for assistance “what are these people even doing with baby diapers that they steal from the trucks?” cried some of the mothers. To mitigate such situation KDF troops operating under AMISOM have been carrying out several medical camps across South Somalia offering basic household provisions for the families who avail themselves at the medical camps.