Thursday, September 12, 2013
Head of Public Relations and Communications
in the Republic of Sierra Leone Armed Forces (RSLAF) has disclosedthat
the government is poised to send another military contingent to Somalia
in early 2014.
Col. M.M. Samura said the Ministry of Defence will soon commence the
training of the second battalion that would replace the first one
deployed in Somalia early this year. He was speaking in an interview
with Concord Times on Monday at the Ministry of Defence in Freetown.
He said each contingent has a term of not more than a year, thus the
first contingent would return home in early 2014 having completed their
one-year mandate. According to Col.Samura, the Defence Ministry has
never received any negative report about their troops deployed in the
war ravaged country. "We are receiving positive news about our men out
there. We have confidence inour commander on the ground," he said.
It could be recalled that early this year, President Ernest Bai
Koroma - who isCommander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces - officially bade
farewell to the 850 RSLAF troops currently deployed in Somalia under the
African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM).
During that ceremony, the Minister of Defence,Rtd. Major Alfred Palo
Conteh,noted that the Peace Mission Training Centre (PMTC) at Hastings
has been expanded to provide training for battalions bound for
peacekeeping mission in Somalia. The exercise is to commence early next
He said the deployment of troops on peace support operations is one
of the performance contracts he signed with President Koromain 2009,
disclosing that 10 officers are also serving as military observers,
armed monitors and staff officers in Darfur.