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The Purpose Of The African Union Mission In Somalia (Amisom)

1152 words - 5 pages

The African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) on the surface is an effective fighting force in Somalia; however, the success of AMISOM is contingent upon Ugandan participation. The existence of AMISOM is due to a long Somali history of political / economic instability and the current struggle against the Somalia based terrorist organization, Al-Shabaab. The overall objective within Somalia is to eliminate or at a minimum contain the Al-Shabaab threat. The creation of AMISOM assists the Somalian Transitional Federal Government (TFG) and its allies to effectively target Al-Shabaab while using the United Nations (UN), European Union (EU), and African Union (AU) backed AMISOM as an umbrella ...view middle of the document...

Currently, members of the EU are considering the amount to which that financial backing can be increased, given that the Union is already financially burdened with several projects in the region, and the funds initially reserved for AMISOM will not be enough to cover the costs sustained by the increasing troop ceiling. The new EU Resolution 2036 (2012) states, “It is therefore vital, as stated in the resolution, that new contributors pledge to join the European Union in providing financial support.” The EU is active with the UN on international initiatives set out by the UN Security Council Resolutions on eliminating piracy off the coast of Somalia. Piracy acts have been occurring simultaneously with the instability in Somalia, further strengthening the motives for a stable Somalia.
The AU operates AMISOM with the approval of the UN and is headquartered in Ethiopia. They face many tasks which include health issues (AIDS/HIV epidemic), famine, intermediating in civil wars; and improving the standard of living. According to their website, one of the objectives of the AU is to promote peace, security, and stability on the continent. This objective directly aligns with eliminating the threat posed by Al-Shabaab.
Due to these instabilities within Somalia, it was essential for the UN, EU, and AU to combine their efforts and form an organization that would effectively optimize international and regional government involvement. According to AMISOM’s website, the primary functions of AMISOM are to support transitional governmental structures, implement a national security plan, train Somali security forces, and to assist in creating a secure environment for the delivery of humanitarian aid. AMISOM’s effort with supporting the transitional government has recently gained positive reviews by the UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. During the Security Council’s open debate on Somalia in New York on March 5th, 2012, the Secretary General stated, “The decision of the Security Council to endorse the expansion of the African Union Mission in Somalia follows major gains by AMISOM, Transitional Federal Government forces and their partners in the military effort against Al-Shabaab.” Citing the UN Security Council (30 September 2011), AMISOM has only 12,000 troops which are stretched between securing an expanding territory and guarding key installations within Somalia. AMISOM is proposing its troop strength be raised to an estimated 20,000 troops, allowing them to secure Somalia effectively if Al-Shabaab attempts to regain some of their lost territories. It is estimated that in 2011, Al-Shabaab’s troop strength was over 14,000. Cite!

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