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By Godfrey Olukya 27-11-2012

The African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) Force Commander Lt. General Andrew Gutti last evening made his inaugural visit to
Beletweyne town in Hiraan region.

Gutti visited the Djiboutian contingent of AMISOM troops headquartered in Beletweyne 332 kms north of the Somali capital Mogadishu for the first time since their recent deployment. Here he met with AMISOM Sector Commander Col Osman Doubad, the Governor of Hiraan region, Abdifatah Hassan and Col Tawane Ahmed Mohammed, the Commander of SNA, in Hiraan.

The Force Commander commended his troops for the admirable job they have done so far in their efforts in assisting the Somali people
especially during the recent floods that resulted in a humanitarian crisis.

“I salute you for doing a commendable job, especially during the floods, the invaluable humanitarian assistance you provided to ensure the safety of the population.” General Gutti said.

AMISOM’s mandate extends beyond combat operations into efforts to support humanitarian relief and provide medical care to the Somali people.

The Djiboutian troops have also been involved in reconciling the local leaders and regrouping and training various militias and integrating them into the Somali National Army.

To this end, the Force Commander assured the representatives of the Somali Armed Forces that AMISOM in line with its mandate to build the capacity of the Somali National Security Forces will from January 2013 begin training the Somali National Army within Somalia. They will recruit from all regions with the aim of creating a national force that is able to take responsibility for the security of the nation and are able to protect civilians and enforce the rule of law.

AMISOM continues to secure areas outside the capital as its area of responsibility expands and in order to support the Somali Federal
Government as it continues to build lasting peace and security throughout the country.

END

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