Some 3,000 Ugandan soldiers from the African Union (AU) mission have arrived in Somalia to help government forces battle al-Shabab, a group trying to overthrow Somalia's weak Transitional Federal Government (TFG) and impose Islamic law.
This comes after the mandate of the AU mission was expanded from peacekeeping to enforcement of peace last month, meaning that AU soldiers can now lead the onslaught against al-Shabab. And they say they are making significant headway in the battle for control of Mogadishu, the Somali capital - more than half of which is under the control of al-Shabab.
But the group, which is believed to have links to al-Qaeda franchises and has recently been targeted by US drone strikes, is growing stronger as it consolidates its hold over much of the country.
So what now for the war-torn country? Can the transitional government pull together at last?
Inside Story, with presenter Shiulie Gosh, discusses with Stig Hansen, an associate professor in international relations at the Norwegian University of Life Sciences and the author of Borders of Islam, and Mohammed Gure, the chairman of the Somali Concern Group, a voluntary organisation.
This episode of Inside Story aired from Saturday, July 2, 2011.
Source: Al Jazeera