Uganda says reduction in AMISOM troops may undermine gains

The Ugandan military on Tuesday said reduction in the number of African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) troops is likely to undermine gains without alternative measures taken.

Ugandan military spokesman Brig. Richard Karemire told Xinhua by telephone that reduction in the number of UN-led peacekeeping troops should be followed by provision of force enablers like attack and utility helicopters to fill in the gap left.

“The reduction must always be based on the cold concrete conditions on the ground. Certainly the situation still requires a sizable number of AMISOM troops in the absence of the requisite force multipliers and limited but growing capacity of the Somalia National Army,” Karemire said.

Uganda is one of the troop contributing countries to AMISOM which is fighting Somali militant group Al-Shabab.

The UN Security Council on May 31 passed a resolution in which it authorized a 1,000 troop reduction of the AMISOM force to 19,626 peacekeepers.

The decision was taken in line with the Transition Plan agreed in 2017, whereby AMISOM will gradually hand over security to Somali forces.

Karemire said the troop contributing countries will now convene and decide how many troops each country will send home.




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