Advisor: Eritrean-trained Somali soldiers did not cross over to Tigray

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MOGADISHU, Somalia - Somali soldiers training in Eritrea may have not after all crossed over to Ethiopia as alleged by the United Nations special rapporteur to Eritrea to assist the federal republic of Ethiopia in containing Tigray People's Liberation Front [TPLF], with various correspondences now vindicating the soldiers.

For far too long, the whole world has been meant to believe that Somali soldiers fought in northern Tigray where thousands of people were killed between November 2020 to November 2022, but the government of Ethiopia and Somalia have persistently dismissed the reports as "fake and unverified".

The special rapporteur claimed the soldiers partnered with their Eritrean counterparts and crossed over to the country from their camps before unleashing violence against innocent civilians, especially across the holy city of Axum. Thousands of people were massacred in this particular city.

But in an interview with the VOA, Somalia's National Security Adviser Hussein Sheikh Ali dismissed the reports, arguing that "none of these soldiers crossed over from Eritrea to Ethiopia". "It is pure lies, we should believe in what people say for clout chasing," he said.

"They gave all returned to Somalia in good spirits and are safe. We are now expecting them to help in the fight against Al-Shabaab who have lost a number of strategic towns across the country," he said while noting that Somalia will continue to work closely with Eritrea in training her soldiers.

Reports from Axum had indicated that a number of Somali troops died during their alleged operations in Tigray, but Hussein Sheikh Ali maintains that "this was just grapevine". There were about 5,000 soldiers who had been recruited clandestinely before being dispatched to Eritrea.

Already, Somalia has yet again dispatched 3,000 more troops to Eritrea for advanced training with a similar number also airlifted to Uganda recently. More soldiers are expected to be taken to Ethiopia and Egypt for such training as the country intensifies the fight against Al-Shabaab militants.

So far, a combined military effort in the last six months has reportedly left over 500 Al-Shabaab militants dead, the highest figure in as many months. The federal republic of Somalia is projecting that by December 2024, Al-Shabaab militants would have been completely eliminated from Somalia.

GAROWE ONLINE

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