ATMIS aligned with Somalia transition plan

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ATMIS, the African Union Transition Mission in Somalia, is focussing on stabilisation and state building with “a clear end goal in sight”, the continental body’s senior peace and security commissioner said.

Ambassador Bankole Adeoye spoke in Mogadishu after a three-day visit to Somalia where he told media ATMIS was “100% aligned with the Somalia transition plan”.

“This implies the strategy of the Government of Somalia and the objectives of ATMIS will be aligned. This is the number one factor that will make a difference,” he said.

A statement issued by the soon to be defunct AMISOM (African Union Mission in Somalia) has it the AU and the Somali government adopted a roadmap from ATMIS to replace AMISOM “subject to authorisation by the AU Peace and Security Council and the UN Security Council.

“This time around, Somalia’s plan is front and centre of ATMIS, with the full support of the European Union and the whole gamut of the United Nations,” the AU Commissioner said.

“ATMIS will have a mobile and agile force that can rapidly degrade, eliminate and decimate terrorists or armed groups making life difficult for the good people of Somalia,” he said.

“ATMIS will have the character of a mission with an end goal to transfer full security responsibilities to the federal Government of Somalia.”

The top AU official said adoption of the Concept of Operations (CONOPs) and the joint proposal in early February for establishment of the new mission in Somalia by the AU and the Federal Government of Somalia and other key stakeholders was a consultative and exhaustive process. It was guided by a set of principles including respect for the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Somalia, national ownership and leadership by the Federal Government of Somalia and adherence to the spirit of political dialogue, inclusivity and reconciliation.

“What I take away is the AU and the government of Somalia remain in the AU vision and mission to build an integrated, prosperous and peaceful continent,” Adeoye said.

During his visit, he met representatives of troop and police contributing countries, paying tribute for key AMISOM achievements in the last 15 years, including recovery of vast areas of territory from Al-Shabaab and creating favourable conditions for state building and re-establishment of governance structures through the federal system.