Saturday, May 25, 2013
Somali MPs have accused Kenyan forces of refusing to protect them during a a fact-finding mission in
southern city of Kismayo. A group of 10 parliamentarians began their mission on 16 May, seeking to find out what has led to a spat of political infighting in the capital of Jubaland.
An Amisom soldier during an operation in Mogadishu obin Jones/AU-UN IST
The southern port city of Kismayo has been tense for some weeks now.
Nine days ago the local assembly named former Islamist warlord Ahmed Madobe president of Jubaland, much to the annoyance of Mogadishu .
Two days later two other men declared themselves president of the region.
Mogadishu then dispatched a fact-finding mission to the city, which
has suffered from clan violence since the start of Somalia’s civil over
two decades ago.
Members of the mission on Friday accused Kenyan forces (KDF) that are
part of the African Union Mission in Somalia (Amisom) of acting
biasedly after they withdrew security support.
“Today we have had an incident with KDF forces when they refused to
provide security to the Somalia members of parliament in Kismayo," one
of the MPs, Abdirahman Hoosh Jibril, told RFI. "Removing security
support will put the lives of MPs at risk and that is very worrying in
this part of the country where there is still a threat causing al-Shebab
and some other elements.”
Members of the mission have also accused the Kenyan forces of siding with the self-declared administration led by Madobe.
Kismayo was liberated by African Union troops last year. Fighters
with the radical Islamist group, al-Shebab had controlled the city for
several years using the port to import weapons.
The worry is that unless the current political instability is
resolved, Somalia’s second largest city could return to the violence of
the recent past.