NEW YORK, Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni has told a meeting of African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) troop-contributing countries (TCC) that their role in Somalia is purely for Pan African reasons of helping to stabilise Somalia.

AMISOM is the regional peacekeeping mission operated by the African Union with the approval of the United Nations in Somalia.

This is a Pan-African venture. We are not employees of the United Nations (UN) or Somalia, he said.

The President was chairing a closed-door meeting, one of a kind, for countries contributing troops to AMISOM including Burundi, Ethiopia, Kenya, Uganda, host Somalia and Djibouti in which they agreed to improve political and military co-ordination to ensure that peace and security is guaranteed in Somalia. A member of the African Union also attended the meeting.

According to a release from Uganda's State House, priority centered at helping Somalia in building a strong national army and taking stock of the political situation. All parties agreed to keenly follow a review on AMISOM by the UN Secretary General.

The UN provides logistics, technical and training support to AMISOM and to the Somali National Army. The UN believes with enhanced support to AMISOM, the African Union Force and predictable funding, along with a co-ordinated effort to build the Somali National Army and Police Forces, Al Shabaab can be defeated.

Uganda was the first country to deploy in Somalia in 2007, under AMISOM to restore peace in the Horn of Africa.

During the meeting, Uganda was elected as official spokesperson of the troop-contributing countries.

The meeting was attended by the Prime Minister of Somalia Hassan Ali Khare, the Prime Minister of Ethiopia Desalegn Hailemariam, foreign affairs minister of Kenya Amina Muhammed, commissioner Ismael Chergui of the African Union, Allen Nyamitwe, the foreign affairs minister of Burundi.

Others were Yusuf Mahmoud, the foreign affairs minister of Djibouti, Abdullahi Rachid the defence minister of Somalia, foreign affairs minister Sam Kutesa, Chief of Defence Forces Gen. David Muhoozi, Uganda's permanent representative to the UN Adoniya Ayebare and Maj. Gen. Kayemba, Uganda's military adviser at the Uganda Mission in New York.



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