Security of training mission in Somalia

An Irish brigadier general leading an EU training mission in Somalia has warned it will not move to the capital, Mogadishu, until protection for instructors and medical facilities is in place.

Irish general warns on security of EU training mission in Somalia
JUDITH CROSBIE

An Irish brigadier general leading an EU training mission in Somalia has warned the operation will not move to the capital, Mogadishu, until enough staff to protect instructors and medical facilities are in place.

Ten Irish defence force personnel are in the core 87-strong mission. Most of the training of Somalia’s defence forces takes place in Bihanga, Uganda, because of the security problems in Somalia, but the aim is to move when possible.

“The duty of care incumbent on me as mission commander towards the personnel of EUTM [EU training mission] Somalia provided by the member states will be adhered to and respected prior to making the definitive decision to move the operation to Mogadishu,” said Brig Gen Gerald Aherne yesterday, after he briefed EU defence ministers in Dublin on the mission.

Security situation

The decision to move to Mogadishu would also be based on the security situation, said Gen Patrick de Rousiers, chairman of the EU’s military committee. “There is no timeframe, there is no decision. There is a willingness, an objective but there is no firm date,” he said.

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Source: Irish Times.

Image: Mogadishu 2010 (c) Siegfried Modola.

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