Registered clashes in Puntland between Al Shabaab and the Somali branch of the Islamic State
, 5 Jan () –
The opposition candidates for the Presidency of Somalia have presented new demands in the framework of the National Consultative Council (CCN) convened by the Prime Minister, Mohamed Hussein Roble, to address the tensions around the electoral process, amid their differences with the president , Mohamed Abdulahi Mohamed.
The opposition has accused the president, popularly known as ‘Farmajo’, of trying to influence the process to benefit, after his term expired in February without elections being held.
Thus, the opposition delegation has indicated that only 135 registered representatives can elect the delegates and has requested that their names be published before the vote to avoid confusion, as well as a verification of them by the electoral committees.
They have also asked the prime minister to take charge of the country’s security and have denounced that ‘Farmajo’ should be just one more candidate, while they have demanded that the security forces not get involved in politics, as reported by the Somali news portal Garowe Online.
The United Nations Mission in Somalia (UNSOM) said on Tuesday that international partners had asked the CCN to “speed up” the electoral process and “improve its credibility,” according to a series of messages posted on its Twitter social network account.
“During the CCN meetings, Somalia’s international partners encouraged improvements in the materialization of the electoral process, including correcting deficiencies in the rules of procedure and ensuring clear time frames for the swift completion of credible elections,” he said.
For this reason, UNSOM stressed that “international partners ask the CCN to ensure that the elections are credible and that they are finalized soon so that Somalia can focus on other priority issues, such as security and development.”
Roble called the CCN meeting on Monday, in a coup against ‘Farmajo’, who last week “suspended” its powers amid a new dispute between the two regarding the elections, after which the military aligned with the president took the control of Roble’s office to prevent him from going to continue his work.
However, Roble managed to enter his office with military support and the support of troops from the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM), after which he denounced the “outrageous” decision of the “former president” and assured that he had assumed command of the Army, while he accused ‘Farmajo’ of “a deliberate attempt to overthrow the Government.”
On the other hand, militiamen from the terrorist group Al Shabaab and the jihadist group Islamic State staged new clashes on Tuesday in a mountainous area in northeast Somalia, the first between the two groups after several months of calm, with no confirmation of victims for now. .
Residents of Bari, in the semi-autonomous region of Puntland, have indicated that the clashes took place around the city of Bosaso, weeks after fighting in the town between regional forces, as reported by the Somali Guardian news portal.
The Islamic State branch in Somalia declared war on Al Shabaab, linked to the terrorist organization Al Qaeda, in October 2020 through a video circulated on social networks in which it called the members of this second group “apostates” .
The Somali branch of the Islamic State emerged in October 2015 after a group of militants from Al Shabaab split from the group and has recruited members in eastern Puntland, where the clan of Abdulkadir Mumin, the leader of this faction, originates from.
Despite the fact that Mumin swore allegiance to the then leader of the Islamic State, Abu Bakr al Baghdadi, he did not respond or name him as the person in charge of the branch of the extremist formation in the country. For its part, Al Shabaab responded to the split by attacking positions of the group linked to the Islamic State and executing several of its members.