Burundi triples troops contribution to Somali

Kampala- Uganda (PANA) -- Burundi has agreed to triple the number of its troops s erving in the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM), from the current three battalions to six, with an immediate deployment of 850 soldier s, Defence Minister Gen.
Germain Niyoyonkana told PANA Tuesday.
Speaking after holding talks with his Ugandan counterpart on their current roles as the only two countries contributing troops to AMISOM, Gen.
Niyoyonkana said the fourth battalion would be deployed to Somalia as soon as the necessary equipment were made ready for their deployment.
''We already have three battalions.
The fourth battalion is all ready to go to M ogadishu as soon as the equipment is available,â? the Burundian minister assured.
The official spoke on the sidelines of an African Union Summit in Kampala, Ugand a.
At the meeting, which was also attended by high-level American officials, both m inisters touched on the clamour to change the mandate of AMISOM, to allow its forces to attack rebel positions.
''After the attacks in Kampala, we ask the international community to come up to support our efforts to deal with the insecurity in Somalia,'' Gen.
Niyoyonkana said.
In their debate on the instability in Somalia, African leaders made a resolute d ecision to deal with the Al Shabaab rebels, who claimed responsibility for the attacks that killed 76 people in Kampala 11 July.
Burundi's decision to deploy extra 2,550 would boost troops inside Somalia.
AMIS OM currently has 6,100 troops in Somalia.
Uganda has pledged an extra 2,000 troops and Guinea is the latest African state to pledge troops to the African mission.
The approved troops level for AMISOM troops was 8,000, but a group of East Afric an states, under the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD), has called for an immediate deployment of 2,000 troops.
AU Commission President Jean Ping's spokesman, Noureddine Mezni, told PANA the A U received pledges for assistance in Somalia during the Kampala summit.

27 july 2010 14:46:00




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