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US, AU pledge to fight on as militia recruits

By | September 23rd 2009

By James Ratemo

The African Union will not withdraw from Somalia despite recent attacks that left 21 dead and more than 90 injured.

AU officials and the US said this as the latter pledged continued arming of the African Union Mission in Somalia (Amisom) forces and the Transitional Federal Government until the war on Al-Shabaab militants is won.

Speaking in Nairobi’s Aga Khan Hospital when he visited recuperating survivors of the recent Al-Shabaab suicide attack, US Ambassador Michael Ranneberger said US would use its support until stability returns to the country.

"The United States will redouble its support for Amisom and FTG to ensure stability in Somalia. Amisom will not pull out despite the attacks," he said.

Sentiments echoed

Echoing the sentiments, AU deputy special representative for Somalia Wafula Wamunyinyi said two casualties of the attacks were in Intensive Care Unit while 24 others were recuperating at Aga Khan, Mater and Nairobi hospitals.

"Amisom is more determined than before, we have a mandate which we are determined to fulfill," said Mr Wamunyinyi.

Ranneberger, who visited nine of the casualties in Aga Khan, said many sustained burns and shattered bones. "It is sad to see people in such conditions," he said.

He denied claims that weapons from US had fallen in wrong hands.

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