Instability in Somalia

The European Union will remain fully engaged in Somalia: this is the message conveyed in the first week of February by the EU during a visit in Mogadishu by senior representatives operating under the EU Common Security and Defence Policy.

For the first time, General Håkan Syrén, Chairman of the EU Military Committee, Rear Admiral Duncan Potts, Operation Commander of the EU NAFVOR – Operation Atalanta, and Colonel Michael Beary, Commander of the EU Training Mission for Somalia (EUTM), paid a joint visit to the Somali authorities in Mogadishu. They reiterated with the members of the Joint Security Committee, which includes senior representatives from the Transitional Federal Government and regions including Puntland and Galmudug, the EU’s intention to enhance peace and security and to counter piracy in Somalia.

The meetings confirmed the need for closer cooperation with the Somali authorities to further strengthen Somali security forces and to improve law and order, with a view to improve the daily lives of the Somali people. The EU officials also stressed that security gains can only be sustainable when the political process moves forward as well.

“The Somali security concerns are our concerns as well and we need to tackle them together” said Rear Admiral Potts.

The possible upcoming EU civilian mission – augmented with military expertise – to strengthen maritime capacities in the Horn of Africa was also discussed with the Somali partners. Complementing the successful EU NAVFOR Atalanta operation at sea, this mission would, inter alia, assist Somali and regional efforts to counter piracy on land.

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