Mogadishu(Mogadishu24)-Religious leaders in Somalia have on Monday voiced their concerns about potential negotiations between the Federal Government of Somalia and the Al-Shabaab terrorist organization.

During a joint press conference, religious leaders from the Islamic Sect ‘Ahlu-Sunna Wal’Jama’a’ claimed that negotiations would only be possible once Al-Shabaab militants disarm themselves.

“While we declare our support for the anti-Al-Shabaab campaign led by President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud, we strongly oppose any potential negotiations between the government of Somalia and the Al-Shabaab terrorist organization, which is exploited by foreign adversaries,” the statement from the religious leaders read.

“Al-Shabaab terrorists have now recognized their military inability and vulnerabilities, and they are pushing talks with the government. However, these negotiations will not be possible until they put down their arms. Any discussions before their disarmament will increase their security threats and challenges,” the statement added.

The religious leaders emphasized that talks between the government and Al-Shabaab would pose significant security risks within Somalia.

“In alignment with the declaration of war against the terrorist group, we reiterate our support for the declaration and pledge our financial, physical, and psychological support to the frontline forces,” the statement further added.

Leaders of Ahlu-Sunna Wal’Jama’a announced that they will establish a committee to mobilize financial support for the frontline forces in their battle against Al-Shabaab.

The religious leaders condemned the Israeli bombardment in Gaza, which killed over 4,000 Palestinian, including doctors, nurses, and mostly women and children seeking shelter in hospitals amid the increased Israeli bombings in Gaza.

In recent months, reports have emerged regarding negotiations between the Al-Shabaab terrorist organization and the federal government of Somalia, mediated by Qatar.

Reports have also added that a group of Somali intellectuals and professionals have been invited for discussions in Qatar concerning potential talks between the government and Al-Shabaab.

The Kingdom of Qatar has previously led a successful peace talks between the Taliban and the government of Pakistan.

Earlier this month, the fourth meeting between Somalia and its Quint partners, including the USA, United Kingdom, Qatar, Turkey, and the United Arab Emirates, was held in Ankara, Turkey.

The meeting primarily focused on the situation in Somalia, particularly on security, politics, humanitarian issues, and strategies for achieving peace and stability in Somalia.

One of the central topics discussed was the potential negotiations between the Federal Government of Somalia and the Al-Shabaab, with the aim of bringing peace and stability in Somalia.

Somalia’s international partners expressed their commitment to and reaffirmed their support for any negotiation process and plans aimed at enhancing Somalia’s security and stability.

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