AMISOM components have in the past weeks changing positions for tactical reasons.
Uganda’s AMISOM contingent stationed in the Somali coastal town of Marka readjusted its positions in what was misreported as withdrawal.
UPDF’s Col. Peter Omola has downplayed UPDF withdrawal reports clarifying that the army has just readjusted its positions for tactical reasons.
Col. Omolo briefed Africa Union delegation that is assessing AMISOM’s challenges in Somalia saying readjusting their position is based on key strategic reasons and is aimed at fortifying the UPDF in the town and to avert any collateral damage in the event of an attack.
Kenya Defence Forces component in AMISOM also moved it recently attacked El-Adde camp for the same reasons.
AU MISSION ASSESSMENT
AU delegation led Maj. Gen. Francis Okello from AU Commission’s Peace Support Operations Division visited Marka on assignment to assess the Somalia-based peacekeeping mission.
The assignment is meant to identify areas that need urgent support from AU. The delegation also sought to explore areas that Somali security institutions can collaborate with AMISOM to efficiently fight Al-Shabaab insurgents.
Col. Omolo confirmed that AMISOM is in control of the coastal town of Marka and that their day and night operations are going on well.
UPDF is working together with Somali National Army detached in the location. On the other hand residents are helpful in sharing of information vital in AMISOM operations.
They are giving us information despite threats and intimidation from Al-Shabaab,” said Col. Omola explained.
AMISOM Force Spokesperson Lt. Col. Paul Njuguna, dismissed recent media reports that the African Union troops had withdrawn from the strategic port city saying AMISOM is in Marka saying the place is peaceful with residents going on with their normal lives.
Lt. Col. Paul Njuguna reiterated that AMISOM components in all five sectors alongside SNA will continue executing their mandate of keeping the Somalia safe and warding off threats posed by Al Shabaab and other armed militant groups.