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Claims of Somalia government's dalliance with Al Shabaab shocking

By Editorial | April 20th 2020 at 11:08:58 GMT +0300

Since 2011, Kenya has been fighting Al Shabaab inside Somalia alongside Amisom troops.

The troops have made substantial gains on the ground by routing the terrorists and restoring law and order in large swathes of the country.

Their success has come at huge cost in terms of lives of Amisom soldiers and even Kenyan citizens. The Kenyan economy has also suffered due to this war.

Ideally, Kenyans and the regional countries whose sons and daughters have shed blood fighting to restore normalcy in the war-torn country believe Somalia owes them gratitude for their sacrifice.

But they are clearly wrong, if a confidential security report seen by The Standard is factual. According to the report, Somalia National Intelligence and Security Agency (NISA) is in bed with Al Shabaab and is aiding the terrorist group to target Kenyan soldiers.

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NISA, the report says, has not only been providing confidential information to facilitate the militants' operations against Kenya, but also funding them. The report claims there is evidence of NISA giving Al-Shabaab $1.5 million (Sh159 million).

This, if true, is most outrageous. It would mean that Somalia government and Al Shabaab (or part of the militia) are one and the same thing. It would mean that the two former enemies now have a common enemy; Kenya.

This begs the question: What is Kenya doing in Somalia if the government has ganged up with the terrorists to fight them?

It is no secret that the relationship between Somalia and Kenya has been sour since the two countries started tussling over their maritime boundary. As a result, the two countries have openly engaged in diplomatic tit-for-tat spats, which led to high-ranking Somalia officials being blocked from entering Kenya last year.

But even with the dispute, which is now at the International Court of Justice, it would be repugnant for Somalia to fund the terrorists to attack Kenya.

Kenya should table whatever evidence it has on this matter before regional agencies like African Union and Intergovernmental Authority on Development, and even international ones such as the UN Security Council so that further investigation can be done and appropriate action taken against Somalia, if need be.

A government that enlists terrorists to fight another is not worth its salt.

For Kenya, if indeed Somalia has taken such a draconian measure, it is time to consider whether its stay in Somalia is worth it. But if Kenya and Amisom eventually decide to leave, it should not complain if Al Shabaab — the monster it is alleged to be bottle-feeding — decides to turn tables on it.  

Al Shabaab Amisom Somalia National Intelligence and Security Agency NISA
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