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Horn of Africa Nations Agree to Joint Campaign Against Al-Shabaab

© AP Photo / Farah Abdi WarsamehAl-Shabaab fighters display weapons as they conduct military exercises in northern Mogadishu, Somalia (File)
Al-Shabaab fighters display weapons as they conduct military exercises in northern Mogadishu, Somalia (File) - Sputnik International, 1920, 02.02.2023
The leaders of Somalia, Kenya, Ethiopia, and Djibouti held talks in Mogadishu on February 1 to discuss joint anti-terrorism efforts. The meeting followed that of their respective defense ministers, as al-Shabaab* continues to intimidate the region.
Somalia, Kenya, Ethiopia, and Djibouti have agreed to jointly fight terrorist threats in the region, as well as to make a joint push for terrorist-controlled land in Somalia.
The agreement was reached during a meeting between Hassan Sheikh Mohamud, William Ruto, Abiy Ahmed and Ismail Omar Guelleh, respectively.
The leaders of the four countries “agreed to jointly plan and organize a robust operational campaign at the frontline states level, of search and destroy on multiple frontlines aiming at key al-Shabaab* strongholds across the south and central Somalia,” their joint statement said.
One of the key points discussed during the meeting was the establishment of a “joint border security mechanism” to eradicate cross-border terrorist activity and provide secure routes for trade and movement.
They agreed to make joint efforts to liberate Somalian territory controlled by terrorists and hailed the Somalian government’s recent success in regaining several strategic areas.
African Union peacekeepers from Uganda provide security as Somali lawmakers arrive to cast their vote in the presidential election, at the Halane military camp in Mogadishu, Somalia Sunday, May 15, 2022. - Sputnik International, 1920, 01.02.2023
Somalia, Kenya, Ethiopia and Djibouti Discuss Common Anti-Terror Efforts
Kenya, Ethiopia, and Djibouti already take part in the African Union Transition Mission in Somalia (ATMIS) designed to fight the al-Shabaab terrorist group. Previously it was the African Union Mission to Somalia (AMISOM), which was replaced by ATMIS on April 1, 2022.
Al-Shabaab is a terrorist organization and al-Qaeda* affiliate that has been active in East Africa since the mid-2000s. Not only has it committed terrorist acts within the borders of Somalia, Ethiopia, and Kenya, but also maintained control over a significant part of Somalian land.
Ahead of the meeting, several mortars were heard in different areas of the Somalian capital.
Terrorist activity by al-Shabaab is a fairly common phenomenon mostly in Somalia and Kenya. In 2022, al-Shabaab militants entered East Ethiopia but were soon pushed back by Ethiopian soldiers. Now, the terrorist formation is only active in the border region.
Earlier al-Shabaab attacked the mayor’s office in Mogadishu, leaving five dead and four injured.
In October 2022, a double car bombing near the Somalian Education Ministry in Mogadishu killed 120 and injured 300 more.
Last year, the government of Somalia declared “an all-out war” against al-Shabaab.
*terrorist organizations banned in Russia and many other countries
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