Somalia: NISA intercepts Al-Shabaab recruits


MOGADISHU, Somalia - The National Intelligence and Security Agency [NISA] has intercepted suspected Al-Shabaab recruits following a tip-off from members of the public, the state media reports, in one of the milestones in the fight against the militants.

According to reports, the 25 people were intercepted while traveling on a mini-bus, and among them were minor, who is said to have been on a mission to join the group as child soldiers. The incidents happened near Afgoye District, about 30Kms west of Mogadishu.

Security teams who arrested the suspects have also detained a driver and two people believed to be accomplices and will be arraigned to answer to charges of recruitment of people on behalf of the terrorist group which is wreaking havoc in the country.

"Acting on a tip-off, the National Intelligence and Security Agency intercepted a mini-bus carrying 25 people, including minors, who were attempting to join the Alshabab terrorist group near the Afgoye district," state media reported.

"The security forces also detained the driver and two accomplices who were facilitating the recruitment," it added, noting that the suspects are also detained to respond to charges before the state makes a decision.

This comes amid an ongoing offensive against Al-Shabaab militants across the country, with the Somalia National Army [SNA] partnering with US Africa Command and the African Union Transition Mission in Somalia [ATMIS] to flush out the militants.

President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud declared total war against Al-Shabaab and after the completion of the first phase of operations against the group in central Somalia, the teams will move to Jubaland and Southwest states for similar tasks.

Somalia asked for a technical pause on the withdrawal of ATMIS troops, citing logistical challenges. However, the soldiers are expected to withdraw completely by December 2024, and would subsequently hand over security responsibilities to the Somali National Army.


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