The President of the Federal Republic of Somalia, H.E. Hassan Sheikh Mohamud, today welcomed the deployment of the European Union Training Mission (EUTM) to Somalia, calling it a “paradigm shift in relations” between the EU and Somalia.
For the last three years the EUTM has trained over 3,000 Somali troops at a base in Uganda, and today the full training operation opened in Mogadishu, where the Third Mandate will continue to support the training and mentoring of Somali security forces. By the end of 2013 all EUTM training will be conducted in Somalia.
The President said: “Our partnership with the European Union is of immense value and has proved that recruitment from across the clans, disciplined training and effective deployment of good soldiers is totally achievable.
“Thanks in large part to the EU, we are beginning to see the development of a Somali National Army (SNA) that is diverse in origin as well as structure, and a force that is accountable, inclusive, proportionate and sustainable, and with a respect for the chain of command, the rule of law and human rights.
The President also underlined the critical shortage of arms and equipment that restricts Somalia’s security capacity.
“Security is the priority concern to everyone and indeed an essential prerequisite for further progress in all spheres of government and development. But our forces today lack critical capability, and suffer a critical shortage of equipment and supplies that restrict our capacity to protect ourselves.
“Therefore I emphasize the need for adequate and sustained training and resourcing for our armed forces and I am very grateful to the EU in leading this support.
“I wholeheartedly welcome the European Training Mission (EUTM) to Mogadishu and our Minister of Defence, the Force Commander and other military officials will work hand-in-hand with you to further develop structures, policy and processes that will produce a self-sustaining Somali force for the future.”
Xafiiska Wararka Midnimo, firstname.lastname@example.org