Burundian troops from the 32nd and 33rd battalions have completed one year of duty in Somalia under the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) and are returning home.
The first batch of 1,891 officers left Somalia for Burundi last Thursday. Others scheduled to leave in the course of the week.
According to commander of the 32nd Battalion Major John Manirakiza, Burundi troops had what he described as good relationship with Somalia National Army.
The two army forces shared information about the enemy –Al-Shabaab. They also conducted several reconnaissance patrols, Major Manirakiza noted.
Somalia National Army are pivotal in the war against Al-Shabaab as they greatly help other AMISOM troops whenever there is a challenge of language barrier. SNA have taught other troops’ officers how to communicate with Somali populations also helpful in providing Human Intelligence (HUMINT).
On his part Major Richard Nikoyagize, the commander of the 33rd Battalion attributed the success of the Burundian troops to high discipline and a good working relationship with the Somali National Army and the Somali populous that have seen the troops liberate regions previously held by the Al Qaeda affiliated Al-Shabaab.
Burundi National Defence Forces are responsible for manning Sector 5 which covers areas such as as El Baraf, Mahaaday, Balcad, Helman, Walshiq and Quorolow.
The troops are also present in sector Kismayo as part of a multinational military deployment.
Other troop contributing countries are Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya and Uganda.