Ugandan troops operating under the African Union (AU) mandate retook the town of Qoryooley in southern Somalia from al-Shabab, a rebel group linked to al-Qaeda, in “Operation Eagle”, an offensive launched in March.
Although AU troops have managed to push al-Shabab out of many parts of Somalia, the daily struggle for control continues – even in the capital, Mogadishu.
In addition to battling insurgents, the Somali government is also grappling with its forces’ lack of capacity and commitment. The European Union has provided training to some troops, but most army recruits have no formal military instruction and will be sent to the front lines.
The fledgling Somali government’s ability to care for and properly govern its people has also been called into question.
This is a rare glimpse into the first joint military operation between the Somali National Army and AU forces as they hunt down al-Shabab fighters.