Turkish army establishing military base in Somalia: Report

Written by  Published by:Shiite News
Published in Rest of World
Tuesday, 19 January 2016

Ankara has started to build a military base in Somalia to train soldiers from African countries to fight against al-Qaeda-affiliated al-Shabab militants, a report says.

In a Monday report, Turkish newspaper Daily Sabah cited military sources as saying that based on an agreement between the Turkish and Somali governments, over 1,500 Somali troops will be trained by 200 Turkish military officers at the base, being established in Somalia’s capital Mogadishu.

Emil Tekin, an official from the Turkish Foreign Ministry said last week that the “military training center will also be an important base to provide military training to all of Africa.”

Tekin added that the Turkish army is also planning to build a military school in Somalia to train officers.

Since 2006, Somalia has witnessed deadly clashes between government forces and al-Shabab militants, who say they aim to overthrow the government in the African state.

The militants have been pushed out of Mogadishu and other major cities in Somalia by government forces and the soldiers of the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM), which is largely made up of troops from Uganda, Ethiopia, Burundi, Djibouti, Kenya and Sierra Leone.

Last month, Turkey announced plans to construct its first overseas military base in Qatar following an agreement signed between the two countries. The base is expected to accommodate 3,000 soldiers.

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