GOOBJOOG NEWS|ADDIS ABABA: The African Union Peace and Security Council has warned that Al-Shabaab may take advantage of the expected withdrawal of 3,000 ATMIS forces unless it is done equitably.
The 15-member Council which endorsed the withdrawal of an additional 3,000 ATMIS troops ‘without any conditions’ by 30 September 2023 said the pull-out must be done equitably to prevent any security gap
The Council ‘expresses concern that Al-Shabaab may exploit any gaps during or following the drawdown of the 3000 ATMIS troops if not done equitably’ a communique from the Council read in part.
It also emphasised that the withdrawal of troops is undertaken in a manner that does not leave ATMIS vulnerable to attacks and that all efforts are directed towards enhanced ATMIS force protection during and following the drawdown as well as protection of the population within ATMIS Area of Operations.
Al-Shabaab has in recent weeks attacked Somali National Army bases, destroying infrastructure, especially in areas vacated by the SNA.
The African Union Transition Mission in Somalia (ATMIS) is expected to fully exit Somalia in December 2024.