UK to Send Hundreds of Special Forces to Somalia to Help Fight Al-Shabaab

British special forces

LONDON (Somaliguardian) – The United Kingdom is due to send hundreds of special forces to Somalia within two months to help fight the militant group Al-Shabaab, which controls large swathes of territory in the Horn of Africa nation, The Daily Mirror reported on Friday.

Members of the elite force will step up a training mission to teach Somali government troops ways to counter jihadist fighters. British officers from an elite army unit had been previously deployed in the country to pave the way for an extended mission set to be launched in 2022.

The news of the deployment comes in the wake of the death of British MP David Amess, 69, who was stabbed to death in what the UK police termed as terrorist incident during his constituency surgery. Ali Harbi, 25, whose family are originally from Somalia, has been arrested and charged in connection to the attack.

Plans for deployment of more troops were under discussion before the MP’s murder and dozens of British soldiers had been already stationed in the Horn of Africa nation to train Somali troops.

UK troops are now training the 60th Somalia National Army Division between camps in Mogadishu and Baidoa, but more special force members will be sent to help train Danab Somali special forces, who had been previously trained by the US military before its hasty pullout in January this year.

The highly-trained British infantry units may mentor Danab on operations against Al-Shabaab, the Daily Mirror reported, citing military sources.

Senior soldiers are already in the region, mapping out where the new troops will be based and what they will be doing,” sources told the Daily Mirror.

Their mission is very sensitive as although a few scores of British troops are already in Somalia, this will put a new emphasis on counter-terror operations there. The scouting mission has also been liaising across the border in Kenya with local counter-terror agencies about the growing terror threat.”

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