Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta on Friday called on the European Union (EU) and the United States to help Somalia strengthen its national army to counter security threats posed by Al-Shabaab militancy.
Kenyatta who held talks with visiting U.S. top diplomat for African Affairs, Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield, said the U.S. and the EU need to increase their support to strengthen the Somalia National Army as well as the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM).
“Kenya wants to lobby other countries, including the U.S., to strengthen the police force of Somalia so that they can enforce peace while the national army is being strengthened,” Kenyatta said in a statement released after the meeting.
Analysts say Somali Army stands a good chance to take over security and deal with Al-Shabaab menace once AMISOM mandate expires.
Al-Shabaab militant group which seeks to topple the government continues to carry out attacks targeting government installations, hotels and AMISOM bases.
The pan African body has cited that rebuilding of a strong national army will go a long way in eliminating terrorism and securing Somalia.
Speaking during the meeting, Thomas-Greenfield said the U.S has responded to a call made by President Kenyatta to the United Nations for a coordination of the military aid targeted at Somalia.
She said the U.S. is now undertaking an initiative to bring together all countries that are giving military aid to Somalia so that there can be coordination and uniformity on issues such as training.
President Kenyatta had made the request for coordination of military aid to Somalia last month when he held a meeting with UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon in Brussels, Belgium.
The President said there were many countries that were doing different activities which have no linkages and this would work against the African Union initiative to stabilize the country.