The Bundeswehr will continue training Somali soldiers during the coming year. On 4 March, the German Cabinet agreed to extend the participation of German armed forces in the EU Training Mission in Somalia (EUTM Somalia) until the end of March 2016. The German Bundestag still has to give its approval.
Under the mandate, up to 20 German servicemen and women will continue to be deployed to the Horn of Africa, where they will train Somali troops. EUTM Somalia was set up in 2010. Around 1200 Somali soldiers have received training in Mogadishu since the beginning of 2014. Prior to that, over 3500 members of the Somali armed forces were given training in military facilities in Uganda. The Somali soldiers have already been deployed alongside the African Union (AU) in the fight against the radical Islamic terrorist organisation al‑Shabab.
In addition to training Somali troops, the Bundeswehr’s mandate includes providing strategic guidance to the Somali general staff and Ministry of Defence. EUTM Somalia does not take part in combat operations. Following decades without any effective government control in Somalia, the aim of expanding and training the armed forces is to stabilise the country.
Comprehensive approach by the EU
EUTM Somalia is part of a comprehensive EU approach, which was adopted in a Strategic Framework for the Horn of Africa in 2011. The aim of the Strategic Framework is to improve security in the region and to strengthen justice. Further components include poverty reduction and the promotion of economic development in the region. The EU is working closely on these fields with international partners, including the Somali Government, the United Nations (UN), the African Union (AU), the East African Community (EAC) and the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD).
German involvement in Somalia
In addition to its role in EUTM Somalia, Germany is also taking part in the anti‑piracy mission Operation Atalanta and the EUCAP NESTOR mission. Atalanta protects the World Food Programme’s shipments, while the aim of EUCAP NESTOR is to strengthen Somali capacities as regards controlling the coastal areas.
Germany’s support for Somalia also includes transitional aid projects to boost development and establish structures. In addition, it provides support to Somali refugees in the large refugee camps in Kenya and Ethiopia. Apart from funding individual projects, the German Government has pledged over 100 million euros to improve urban water supply and rural development in Somalia. The EU also runs water supply and healthcare projects with German participation.