Somalia: Jubaland rejects use of clan militia in Al-Shabaab war

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MOGADISHU [SMN] - Somalia's federal state of Jubaland has rejected plans to recruit local militia in the pretext of fighting Al-Shabaab, a strategy which is now being used in different parts of the country, particularly in Galmadug, HirShabelle, and Southwest where the first phase of the operations was anchored.

The country is set to start the second phase of the Al-Shabaab crackdown during the month of Ramadan according to a senior advisor in Villa Somalia, with the US Africa Command and the African Union Transition Mission in Somalia [ATMIS] also set to play a role. Militia has been important in the war as well.

But Yusuf Hussein Dhuumal, the state minister of security, insisted that the use of clan militia would destabilize the state given the possibility of poising security threats. There are claims that several meetings have been held in Nairobi in which organizers have strategized on recruiting militia.

Among those who were allegedly present were a former president's administration team including a former Somalia minister and a political advisor. The group, reports indicate, is pushing for the creation of Ma'awisley clan militia like the ones who have been fighting elsewhere across the country.

"Any recruitment will be done by the security department led by me as the Security minister. I will prepare their training and their ammunition. Someone can't just recruit militia in the mindset of fighting Al Shabab, it is not a good move for the Federal Government of Jubaland and the Country of Somalia. It's a recipe for disaster," he said.

Sources say the ideology of forming clan militia is being pushed by a senator and a former minister who are reportedly former allies of regional leader Ahmed Islam Mohamed Madobe, the current president of Jubaland. 

According to reports, the two are allegedly involved in the creation and armament of clan militias in the Gedo region disguised to fight Al Shabab but Jubbaland claims to be a militia created to destabilize them as a state.

"The president commissioned the fight against Al Shabab. It's now ongoing, we will be aided by the Somalia National Army [SNA] and soldiers from neighbouring countries will cross the border to help," he said.

In an interview with the Somali BBC radio, the minister said the armament of clan militia poses a great threat to the fragile state of peace and security in the region. Jubaland has been a buffer zone for the republic of Kenya which has heavily deployed the Kenya Defense Forces [KDF] within the Sector II of ATMIS.

President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud had also asked locals to take arms against Al-Shabaab militants something which security analysts say could be a thorn in the flesh in the future once the Al-Shabaab militants are overpowered. The government is determined to eradicate the militants through military and ideological tactics.

GAROWE ONLINE

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