UN supports Somalia against potential Daesh, al-Shabaab collaboration in Yemen

Published November 10th, 2015 - 11:00 GMT
Somali Prime Minister Omar Sharmarke with UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon in October. (AFP/Kena Betancur)
Somali Prime Minister Omar Sharmarke with UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon in October. (AFP/Kena Betancur)

AFP reports that Somali Prime Minister Omar Sharmarke met with the UN Security Council on Monday, warning that Daesh and Somali-extremist group al-Shabaab might take advantage of Yemen's instability and collaborate there.

Prime Minister Sharmarke called for UN intervention to end the conflict in Yemen before the extremist groups start using the country "as a conduit or a launching pad." 

Al-Shabaab recently switched their allegience from al-Qaeda to Daesh. While Somali government forces pushed al-Shabaab out of the major cities in 2011, the extremist organization launched an attack on a hotel in the capital city, Mogadishu, last week, killing at least a dozen people.

Prime Minister Sharmake highlighted the hotel attack in his request to the UN Security Council, stating, "that though Somalia and its international partners have won the battles against al-Shabaab, they have yet to be demolished."

The Somali government fears more attacks if al-Shabaab and Daesh gain the ability to coordinate and organize in nearby Yemen. Yemen's major port city, Aden, is only 163 miles from the Somali port of Berbera.

Prime Minister Sharmarke's concerns are backed by Ismail Ould Chikh Ahmed, the UN envoy for Yemen. AFP reports that in a recent statement, Ahmed said extremist groups such as Daesh are taking advantage of the unstable and often chaotic environment in Yemen and becoming a serious threat to the region.

Prime Minister Sharmarke requested more support and funding from the Security Council, "to stand with Somalia against this terror network."

The Security Council unanimously adopted a resolution to increase the UN's logistical support to the African union, AMISOM, and its joint operations with the Somali army.

The UN envoy for Somalia, Nicholas Kay, supported the Somali Prime Minister's statements to the Security Council, stating "Somalia is well advanced in its political and security transformation from failed to recovering state."

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