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The Situation In Somalia Could Turn To Chaos If Unchecked

The Taliban’s swift takeover of Afghanistan has raised concerns that it could encourage other Islamist militant groups around the world, such as al-Shabab in Somalia. Experts warn that when and if international forces there try to hand over security to the Somali government, the world could see a repeat of what happened in Afghanistan. Former Somali intelligence official Abdulsalam Gulaid says Somalia could see a similar development unless the Somali government ends its overdependence on international troops. He spoke Monday, one day after pro-al-Shabab media outlets in Somalia celebrated the fall of Afghanistan’s government to the Taliban. Gulaid said that although al-Shabab does not possess the military power of the Taliban, he has no doubt nothing will stop them if they choose that path. In April, Somali armed forces assumed a lead role in their operations, as laid out in a Somalia Transition Plan approved by the government and the African Union Mission in Somalia, AMISOM. The plan is a strategy in which AMISOM peacekeepers will gradually transfer security responsibilities to Somali security agencies before a pullout. The plan signed in 2018 includes a troop reduction.