Mogadishu(Mogadishu24)-The President of the Federal Government of Somalia, Hassan SheikhMohamud, embarked on an official visit to Eritrea earlier this week to discuss security and defense cooperation between Somalia and Eritrea. 

In an interview with Eritrean local television, the president addressed the crucial role played by the African Transition Mission (ATMIS), formerly the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM).

“The African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) has been in Somalia since 2007, and they have played a crucial role in stabilizing the country. When they first arrived, Al-Shabaab held significant territory, and AMISOM successfully pushed them back, particularly in the capital, Mogadishu, and other key areas,” President Hassan said.

President Hassan Sheikh expressed gratitude to the African Union troops for their support and contributions to Somalia’s security and peace-building efforts.

“We are deeply grateful for their support. Moreover, AMISOM’s involvement demonstrates that African problems can be addressed with African solutions.”

He added, “AMISOM provided Somalia with a valuable opportunity to organize and establish a functioning government. Their contribution has been significant, and they have sacrificed the lives of their citizens to help Somalia grow and progress.”

The president pointed out that ATMIS troops’ drawdown will be successfully completed by December 2024, as agreed in the United Nations Security Council resolutions.

“AMISOM’s mission in Somalia is a success story, and it has allowed Somalia to build the capacity to take over its security responsibilities. Within 15 months, Somalia will assume full responsibility for its security,” he added.

The federal government of Somalia has intensified its fight against Al-Shabaab and strengthened its efforts to the regional level, seeking security cooperation with neighbouring countries and across the world.

Al-Shabaab militants have conducted a surge of terror attacks on military bases and crowded areas, resulting in the deaths of hundreds of Somali security forces and civilians.

The President visited Eritrean military camps, where Somali soldiers are trained to accelerate the fight against Al-Shabaab and contribute to the government’s efforts to liberate the remaining areas under the terrorist group’s control.

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