n Africa Conflict Monthly Monitor - AMISOM's success story in Somalia - : East Africa - issue in focus

Volume 2013, Issue 05
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Although by any other state measure Somalia remains a highly volatile country, with Puntland in the horn's central region remaining semi-autonomous from the Southern region of Somalia, and Somaliland virtually an independent state, for the past 20 years this new stability is an indicator of the success of the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM). Additionally, with Kenyan forces now operating in the country with 18,000 soldiers comprising Burundian, Djiboutian, Kenyan and Ugandan components, the regional military presence in Somalia is significant. All told, the successful capture by AMISOM of the key Somalian port towns of Kismayo and Mogadishu, as well as the opening of key road links between southern locales is an important indicator of the country's stability, and perhaps one of the first complete campaigns for an African regional military force.

A mid-March car bombing by al-Qaeda-linked al-Shabaab terrorists killed ten people in central Mogadishu. The bombing is the first major attack by the organisation in 2013, highlighting the recent three-month calm that existed in not only Mogadishu, but throughout much of southern Somalia. Although followed with an even larger attack on Mogadishu courthouses in mid-April, the trend towards Somalia's stabilisation continues.

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