Federal Parliament calls on #Kenya to withdraw troops from #Somalia
Mogadishu,Somalia (Xinhua + DIPLOMAT.SO) – Members of the Federal Parliament of Somalia have debated a motion that calls for the withdrawal of Kenyan troops which are fighting ‘al-Shabaab’ in the Horn of Africa nation.
During the debate, the legislators expressed their strong opposition against Kenya’s on-going plans to build a security wall along the common border in northeast Kenya, saying Nairobi was encroaching on their territory.
After listening to the submissions delivered by committee of the Federal Parliament of Foreign and Internal Affairs, the lawmakers voted to have an urgent response to the border crisis with solution to the crisis at the border in 48 hours.
Mohamed Omar Dalha, Deputy head of Parliamentary Commission on Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, said the Kenya government violated the Somali territory by constructing the wall.
“The Kenya government is building the wall inside Somalia, it is against the international law, Kenya should withdraw its forces from Somalia,” Dalha told Parliament.
“We also request the international community to seek contributing troop countries elsewhere in order to replace the troops from Kenya,” he added.
Kenya is building a 440-mile wall along its border with Somalia in a bid to keep out ‘al-Shabaab’ and boost security after a wave of attacks that have claimed scores of lives and provoked severe criticism of the government’s response.
The wall, a series of concrete barriers, fences, ditches and observation posts overlooked by CCTV stations, is expected to stretch from the Indian Ocean to Mandera, where both countries converge with Ethiopia.
The legislators called on the Somali government to ensure that Kenya does not interfere with the territories of Somalia, saying reports and images from satellite indicate that the building of the wall will reach Somalia’s territory.
Another lawmaker Abdullahi Jama said the border between the two countries is clear and could not be aggressed by Kenya.
Speaker of the Parliament Mohamed Osman said 160 parliamentarians voted in favor for that decision to be taken in the next 48 hours while two others rejected the motion while one abstain.
Reports say the authorities are concerned about the wall construction move despite assurance from President Kenyatta on the issue in Nairobi last week during the prime minister’s visit.
Nairobi insists the wall is for security purpose meant to prevent increasing armed group ‘al-Shabaab’ attacks inside its soil, but Somalia is opposed to the plan which its says will only catalyze ‘al-Shabaab’s gruesome attacks.
Somalia and Kenya enjoy close diplomatic relations invigorated by fight against armed group ‘al-Shabaab’ that has become a major security challenge to the two states.