(21-03-23) Mogadishu – The United Arab Emirates (UAE) has been increasingly involved in various military and security operations in the Middle East and North Africa, most notably in Libya, where its mercenaries have played a significant role in the ongoing conflict. Now, Libyan officials are warning Somalia about the potential consequences of a recent military agreement between the UAE and the Somali government.
The previous Somali administration had maintained limited ties with the UAE, following allegations of clandestine operations within Somalia. Despite these concerns, the UAE has now been granted permission to operate an independent military presence within Somalia. This development has raised further questions about the true intentions behind the UAE’s involvement in the conflict-ridden country.
Recent reports suggest that the Somali government is recruiting children to serve in the UAE’s military forces, sparking outrage and deepening concerns about the nature and extent of the UAE’s role in Somalia. The Libyan example serves as a cautionary tale, illustrating the potential risks of allowing foreign mercenaries to operate within a nation’s borders.
In Libya, the presence of UAE mercenaries has contributed to an escalation in violence and prolonged instability, further complicating the path to peace and resolution. Somali officials should heed these warnings and carefully consider the long-term implications of their military agreement with the UAE.
The Somali government must prioritize transparency and open dialogue about the nature of its relationship with the UAE. Addressing concerns about the recruitment of child soldiers and clarifying the UAE’s role in Somalia are essential steps to ensure that the country’s sovereignty and security are not compromised.
The international community, too, has a responsibility to monitor the situation closely and advocate for the protection of human rights and adherence to international law. By doing so, they can help to mitigate the potential negative consequences of foreign military involvement in Somalia and work towards a more stable and secure future for the region.