President Sharif meeting with Gen_ Mohamed Ali Samatar, former Defense Minister during President Sharif's visit in Washington DC. Oct.2009 (Photo Kahin - HOL)
Thursday, April 12, 2012
Nairobi, Kenay (HOL) - Somalia’s former Defense Minsiter Gen. Mohamed Ali samatar urged military personnel to restore the dignity of the country’s military. Mohamed Ali Samatar was one of the ruling Generals in the ousted military government of Mohamed Siad Barre before it was overthrown in 1991.
“Somalia’s military forces were well disciplined and well trained than any other military in Africa” said Mohamed Ali Samatar calling the army to restore its dignity.
In an Interview he gave to radio Mogadishu for the commemoration of the national army day on 12 April, the former vice president said Somalia had one united national army that was recruited from different parts of Somalia. "The army was recruited from different areas in the country but they were trained in the country, yet they were well trained and we had a powerful army” he said.
The retired Military general was a key figure in Somali politics throughout the 1970s and 1980s, he now faces trial in the US for committing crimes against humanity in northern Somalia while he was an army general and Prime Minister in the military regime of Siad Barre.
He pleaded no contest in a civil court in the United States though he rejected wrongdoing. Gen. Samatar said he never approved any slayings.