AU calls for youths’ de-radicalisation in Somalia

Mogadishu  –  African Union’s top envoy for Somalia, on Wednesday called for de-radicalisation of youths in Somalia and to shield them from victimisation by Al-Shabaab terrorists.
AU Special Representative for Somalia, Madeira Francisco, said countering radicalisation of the Somali youths was necessary to curb terrorism in the Horn of Africa nation.
“We are going to concentrate on de-radicalisation, we are going to sensitise the youths that they are being misled by these murderers.
“Joining these people is not a good idea and that these people stand for evil,’’ he said in a statement issued from African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM).
Madeira told an engagement forum in Mogadishu that though extensive progress has been made against Al Shabaab, more needed to be done to curtail its ability to spread terror.
He said AMISOM, with the help of its development partners, would continue helping Somalia strengthen its government institutions to restore and maintain the rule of law.
The AU envoy expressed optimism that the war against Al-Shabaab would be won by sheer will and resilience of the Somali people, evident in the ongoing initiative to stabilise and reconstruct the country.
The envoy said AMISOM would try its best to provide education, shelter and food to the youths to prevent them from being recruited by Al-Shabaab.
“Unemployment, poverty and political marginalisation are contributing to the Islamic radicalisation of Somali youths; a situation experts say must be addressed through economic empowerment and inclusive policies.
“Our effort is to make sure that the government of Somalia, with its institutions, is in a position to be present throughout the country.
“Our effort aims at allowing the population to be able to do agriculture, commerce and also transport their products to the markets’’, Madeira said.
He noted that AMISOM troops were busy securing the main supply routes to enable free movement of goods and services.
The AU envoy stressed that AMISOM would continue undeterred in the fight against terrorism in spite of the massive challenges and shortage of resources.
He appealed to the international community for more resources, among them force enablers and multipliers. (Xinhua/NAN)

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