The African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) has rejected claims that AMISOM forces were involved in Guriel town clashes between the Ahlu Sunna group and government forces.
In a statement, the African Union Mission to Somalia (AMISOM) termed the allegations ''false and malicious.''
''These allegations are false, toxic and malicious, deliberately intended to cause disaffection between AMISOM and the Somali communities,'' the statement read in part.
''AMISOM operations, including military operations and support to SSF, are guided by the mandate provided by the AU Peace and Security Council and UN Security Council. They are implemented in strict observance of the approved Concept of Operations and Rules of Engagement.'' the statement addded.
The functions set out by these instruments are to disrupt and degrade Al Shabaab, assist the SSF in their effort to put an end to terrorism in the country, bring peace and provide security support to enable the Federal Government of Somalia and its Federal Member States to carry out their functions of government, including elections security.
In fulfilment of this mandate, AMISOM reinforced its forces in Dhusamarreb for the purpose of securing the on-going electoral process as part of the National Elections Security Taskforce strategy. These AMISOM forces operate under very strict instructions.
They have not provided support to the government of Somalia at either national or regional level to fight Ahlu Sunna Walja’ama, nor have they, in any way, been involved in the bloody armed confrontations between the government and Ahlu Sunna Walja’ama in Guriel town or elsewhere.
Since the fighting broke out in Guriel, AMISOM, both separately and as part of the international community based in Somalia, has consistently appealed to the parties to cease fighting and seek to resolve their differences through dialogue. AMISOM will continue this effort since it strongly believes that the problems facing Somali stakeholders in Galmudug are essentially political which must, and can, be solved through negotiated means.
AMISOM, wishes to categorically state that its forces are in Somalia to fight terrorism, Al shabaab, Isis and their affiliates, not to turn their guns against Somali stakeholders engaged in political disputes with other Somali stakeholders.