MOGADISHU, 17 November 2009 (Somalilandpress) – Djibouti prime Minister Dileita Mohamed Dileita today attended the
ceremony to mark the end of training of some 350 Somali soldiers by France.

The charge d’affaires at the Somali embassy in Djibouti, Mr Abourhaman Mohamed Hirabe, the French ambassador, Mr Dominique Decherf, the chief of staff of French forces stationed in Djibouti (FFDJ), Brig Gen Thierry Caspar-Fille-Lambie, as well as several top Djibouti and French military officers also attended the ceremony which took place at Myriam Camp some 70 kilometres from the capital.

Following in the example of the first group of 154 elements of the Somali security forces trained by France a few months ago, the second contingent of 350 men also received training that lasted about six weeks.

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The training overseen by the 5th RIAOM [French Overseas Interarmy Regiment] was aimed at instilling in the Somali soldiers the basics of international law of war and to create the beginnings of a group spirit.

It is worth noting that the French government had broached with the European Union a suggestion of training 3,000 additional Somali security forces, a plan which will goes in hand with the training of national coast guards in the area. Financed by Japan and the EU, a centre based in Djibouti with the support of Kenya, Oman, Tanzania,
but also the provinces of Somaliland and Puntland will open in January 2010.

France’s support for the transitional government and more precisely its participation in the putting together of a Somali national security force comes in the framework of UN Resolution 1872, France’s ambassador to Djibouti explained, adding that he was convinced that the process launched by his country opens a new path to the reconstruction process and the pacification of Somalia.

Mr Abourhaman Mohamed Hirabe, the Somali embassy in charge d’affaires, has for his part on behalf of the Somali government expressed his gratitude to Djibouti and France for their efforts towards peace and stability in Somalia.

By: Abdinasir Mohamed