Somalia: HirShabelle state recruits youth to bolster security

By Xinhua

MOGADISHU, Somalia - The regional state of HirShabelle State recruited 200 youth as part of a second phase of its police recruitment program aimed at boosting security in the region, the AU mission said on Monday.

The exercise, conducted in Beletweyne by Somali Police Force and African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM), saw 200 youth enlisted, including 125 from Hiran region and 75 from Middle Shabelle region.

Philemon Dantim, AMISOM's police team leader in Beletweyne, said the recruitment and training exercise was aimed at establishing a strong police force capable of securing the region.

"We have a very good number of recruits, most important, we have a good percentage of women and they will be going in for medical checkups and other tests conducted by AMISOM police," Dantim said in a statement issued in Mogadishu.

HirShabelle State plans to recruit 800 police officers under a program supported by AMISOM, European Union and UK's Department for International Development.

The current recruitment comes two months after the graduation of the first batch of police recruits who have since been deployed to various parts of HirShabelle to maintain law and order.

Isak Ali Abdulle, Hiran police commander, said the recruits were selected not only on the basis of clan and regional representation but also on merit.

"The recruits comprise both male and female. They were selected based on their merit. We allowed the clans to share the numbers so that we establish real federal police and not one from a particular clan," said Abdulle.

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