The transfer of Forward Operating Bases (FOB) to the Somali National Army by the African Union force in Somalia, ATMIS, has been completed prior to today’s withdrawal of 2,000 forces. The most recent were the Jazeera base outside of Mogadishu and the Gerilley FOB in the Gedo region. SNA received the Jazeera base from the Ugandan People’s Forces (UPDF), and Geriley base from the Kenya Defense Forces . Six FOBs have now been transferred from ATMIS to SNA .Others include Adale, Haji Ali and Miirtaqwo.
In accordance with the resolutions 2628 (2022) and 2670 (2022) passed by the UN Security Council last year, 2,000 AtMIS troops withdrew today. This occurs prior to the AU forces’ anticipated December 2024 complete withdrawal from Somalia. Analysts have suggested that, however, given the level of preparedness and escalating Al-Shabaab insurgency, the timeline may be much more ambitious. Today’s withdrawal of 2,000 troops leaves about 17,000 African Union soldiers. According to Prime Minister Hamze Barre, 20,000 more security personnel were hired by the government in the past year and will be integrated into the security architecture by the end of 2024.
Hussein Maalin, the national security adviser, additionally stated that Somalia has amassed enough forces to take over ATMIS’s security responsibilities. Al-Shabaab, however, is also generating militias in the midst of this buildup to fend off the anticipated offensive in phase two of the operation against the organization. Videos depicted parades of al-Shabaab militants matching in an undisclosed location this past week, according to pro-Al-Shabaab media. Sources claim that over the past eight months, under intense pressure from the Somali National Army, clan militias and state forces, the group has been actively recruiting fighters.
About 20,000 troops from Kenya, Djibouti, and Ethiopia are anticipated to join the second phase of Operation . The South West and Jubaland states will be the operation’s primary focus.