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UN extends African peace mission in Somalia

AFP  |  United Nations 

A UN-backed mission in Somalia, which faces attacks by an affiliate, received unanimous backing today until July 31.

The Mission in (AMISOM), with about 21,600 troops, operates with the approval of the UN and relies on international funding.

By extending AMISOM's mandate to the end of July, the allowed for a review of recommendations expected in a "joint assessment" report on to be presented by June 15.

In its resolution, the recalled that it authorised the to reduce AMISOM to roughly 20,600 personnel by October 30, after 1,000 troops were pulled out last year.

There are plans for a full withdrawal of foreign troops by December 2020, but heads of state and ministers from the main troop contributors -- including Burundi, Djibouti, Ethiopia, and -- in March warned the time frame for the drawdown was "not realistic and would lead to a reversal of the gains made by AMISOM." The mission was deployed in 2007 to defend the internationally-backed government against attacks by the Shabaab, a Somali-led affiliate.

The Shabaab was blamed for the country's worst ever attack, in which a truck bombing left more than 500 dead in October last year.

Experts describe the bloated and largely ineffective as a collection of clan militias, with various international militaries providing poorly-coordinated training to different units.

The Shabaab lost its foothold in in 2011 but has continued its fight.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Wed, May 16 2018. 03:45 IST