Some Ethiopian troops in Somalia not under AU mission

Tuesday August 18 2015

Ethiopian troops patrol at the entrance of an abandoned building in Baidoa, Somalia. An Amisom Sector four commander indicated that some Ethiopian troops receive orders from Addis Ababa and do not operate under Amisom. PHOTO | FILE |

Some of the Ethiopian soldiers operating in Central Somalia's Hiran region are not under the African Union Mission in Somalia (Amisom) forces.

Abdurahman Abdi Dhimbil, the Commander of Sector four of the African Union Mission in Somalia (Amisom) confirmed this at a media briefing on Monday. It was held in Beletweyne town, the headquarters of Amisom’s Sector 4, which is 335 km north of the Somali capital Mogadishu.

Mr Dhimbil’s statement came after Ethiopian troops that seized five villages and settlements from the Al-Qaeda linked Al-Shabaab left Hiran region.

The withdrawal of the Ethiopian troops and the accompanying forces from Somali National Army (SNA) caused an uproar after Al-Shabaab militants returned to the vacated zones.

“I want to make it clear that Ethiopian army units that recently withdrew from Halgan settlement do not belong to Amisom,” said Dhimbil.

He added, “The same applies to the Ethiopian troops that captured villages in Hiran region such Nur Fanah, Bo’oh, Buq-aqable Eel Ali, Buqgosaar and other places.”


The Amisom Sector four commander indicated that the Ethiopian troops receive orders from Addis Ababa, the Ethiopian capital.

In Hiran region, Djiboutian and Ethiopian troops serving under the auspices of the AU Mission, help the Somali government in the fight against Al-Shabaab jihadists.

However, it is the first time that an Amisom command clarified on Ethiopian troops that are acting independently in the country.

Authorities in Mogadishu and Addis Ababa are yet to comment on the issue.

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