Ethiopian premier says ready to deploy troops if Somali government overthrown

Mogadishu (Somalilandcurrent)- Ethiopia’s Prime Minister, Meles Zenawi, has said his country is ready to once again deploy its troops in Somalia if Islamist groups manage to overthrow the Somali president. Mr. Zenawe said his government has strengthened security along the border with Somalia and has made a decision to send troops to the neighbouring country if at any point it feels threatened in order to ensure security in the country. “Our troops are ready to return to Somalia if we feel there is a potential for danger and if the Transitional Federal Government [TFG], which we have good relations with, is overthrown,” Zenawi said in a press conference in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa. “So far, we do not have any set plans in which we intend to go into Somalia, however, we will closely monitor the situation in the Horn of African country and we will deploy our troops if the current legitimate government in the country is overthrown.” He added. The Ethiopian Government had deployed its forces in Somalia two years ago and ousted the Islamic Courts Administration which was in control of the country at the time. Ethiopian troops withdrew from the country early this year after an agreement in which the current TFG was formed in Djibouti was reached. The spokesman for the Al-Shabab group, Sheikh Ali Mahmud Rage held a news conference in Mogadishu in which he said they will fight any foreign troops deployed in the country in order to back the TFG which they are currently fighting. There are already many Ethiopian troops with battle wagons present in central Somalia regions, particularly in Hiran. Senior officials of these Ethiopian troops that are currently in Somalia have said they are in the country in order to look after the security of their own country.

By Abdinasir Mohamed




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