Sunday, September 6, 2009

Important Change in Mandate for AU Force in Somalia

The African Union's mission in Somalia (AMISOM) will apparently be working with a new mandate.

A Ugandan official told journalists:
..the earlier mandate constrained the UPDF [the main troop contributors are Uganda and Burundi] and was deadly as it demanded the peacekeepers to fight back only if they were attacked first.

The new mandate now means that the UPDF can carry out pre-emptive attacks on the insurgents in the war tone Horn of Africa country.

I wonder how much this will help given that the 4,000 strong contingent is undermanned, insufficiently equipped etc. Does this really mean that the peacekeepers will start operating differently? It will be interesting to see what happens and how these "pre-emptive" operations actually go.

Meanwhile, government and insurgent forces clashed in the capital, killing 6 civilians.

5 comments:

  1. The only effective forces in Somalia are Ethiopian. The UN qua AU should consider bringing them back and giving them a mandate.

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  2. Alex--what would be the public's view on the Ethiopian forces? My understanding is that Somalis hate them and that their presence would serve only to further legitimize any insurgency.

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  3. True, but in the meantime the Erythreans are arming the other side!

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  4. I'm taking for ever to respond to anything today--apologies.

    On the Eritreans--how much did that change when the Ethiopians were in town? Did it really make that much of difference? I mean do you know where I could read about how the Ethiopian presence helped curb the arms trafficking/provision to the Shabab et al.? Also, how much more weapons to combatants need in this conflict, the UN has said that the arms embargo is so systematically violated that it"has no normative value." How much has additional armament helped either side really? Or perhaps it's too soon to tell? I'm not as familiar with the Somalia conflict and my reading on the arms trafficking there is pretty limited (the usual suspects I keep mentioning). I also don't know that much about the insurgency...all this to say, I'd be interested in learning more.

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  5. that's supposed to be do combatants not to of course.

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