US Secretary of State Hilary Clinton recently announced that America wanted “an open, transparent dialogue about what more we can do to help the people of Somalia realize their own dream”. The head of Somalia’s transitional government, President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud welcomes the move.
In light of the Western named “war on terrorism” and the big push against al-Shabab using African Union forces from Uganda and Burundi, it seems that Western forces might be ready to openly resume business after a 20 year gap.
The African Union has been keen for the UN to take charge of the situation in Somalia, but after the disastrous US Operation Restore Hope mission in 1992, there was little appetite for such a fight.
With South Somalia getting UN food relief for the first time in 4 years, there is the ongoing concern about al-Shabab and what the future holds regarding their activities.
Commander of the African Union forces in Hiiraan province in central Somalia, General Osman Subagle has said that al-Shabab has no military capabilities any longer in Somalia.
The African Union mission in Somalia is combined troops from Uganda, Burundi, Djibouti and Kenya and together with Somali forces; the mission is reported to have successfully dislodged al-Shabab from many urban areas in south and central Somalia including the capital city, Mogadishu.