Ethiopian troops accused of violent involvement in Somalia’s domestic politics
MOGADISHU, Somalia – Somali political alliance under Forum for National Parties (FNP), the coalition chaired by former country’s President Sharif Sheikh Ahmed has voiced grave concern about what he described as ‘an unfortunate renewal of Ethiopia’s violent involvement in Somalia’s domestic politics.
In a statement sent to Ethiopian PM Abiy Ahmed by FNP leadership said the Ethiopian National Defence Forces (ENDF) have been repeatedly involved in illegal activities whose outcome could at best undermine the fragile state-building and nascent democratic processes in Somalia.
Sheikh Ahmed says the latest of the incidents took place in Gedo region where ENDF commanders detained dully appointed district commissioners of Belet-Hawo, Dolow and Luuq towns.
He said the commissioners were released after they have been coerced into rebelling against the very authority that appointed them.
Read the statement bellow
In a similar fashion, ENDF has, on the 19. of November 2019, prevented the Vice President of lubaland Regional State from visiting his constituents in order to assess the effectiveness of the local administration and capacity of security forces to respond to possible terrorist activities. The VP avoided confrontation with ENDF, giving chance to diplomacy and friendly resolution of the matter. Prior to this, ENDF has plainly interfer. with the election in lubaland where a plane full of Ethiopian commandos attempted to land in Kismayo on the 19. of August to alter the constitutional electoral process and facilitate predetermined outcome forcing unelected leaders upon the people of the region.
Furthermore, ENDF had hijacked the elections In South West Regional State In December 2018 where, in the proce., several civilians lost their lives, scores were Injured, and property was destroyed in Baldoa. This had almost translated into a violent uprising against both ENDF contingents and the local regime, endangering the fragile peace and political settlement in the region. As we write this letter, ENDF has just deployed well-anned non AMISOM company In Dhuusa-mareeb, the capital of Galmudug Regional State, to interfere with the upcoming elections and ensure a “victory for a predetermined candidate.
Combined, these incidents are in a clear violation of international laws and agreements lgov.mk18 Peacekeeping in the country. For instance, ENDF is in breach of the United Nations Security Council Resolution of 1725 adopted on the 6th of December 2006 that mandates International peace building actors In Somalia to perform their duties in a manner that contributes to peace and state-building.
Equally, ENDF is in violation of the Status of Mission Agreement (SOMA) signed with AMISOM of which it is a key contributor. Article 8 of this agreement clearly states that ‘AMISOM and its members shall refrain from any action or activity incompatible with the Impartial and international nature of their duties or inconsistent with the spirit of the present arrangement’. The agreement further mandates AMISOM and its members to respect all local laws and regulations.
Unfortunately, ENDF rarely observes these responsibilities as its canting.ts operate outside of the local and international legal frameworks governing their stay in the country. As ENDF continues to compromise Its Impartiality, we believe that this will negatively affect the fragile state•building/peacebuilding in Somalia. This is so because peace and state building are a very complex processes that require trust and collaboration between key external actors and the local communities. When key external actors have vested interest to side with one of the parties, as demonstrated by ENDF, their engagement intensifies conflict rather than moderating it.
It is therefore our humble request that this matter receives your urgent and kindest attention, trusting that you will address the issue in a manner reflecting the image of a new Ethiopia with a great potential of playing a crucial, neutral and constructive role in the geopolitical dynamics.
We look forward to a speedy resolution of our concerns. Yours Sincerely Forum for National Parties (F.P)