The contribution of African Union peace keeping force in promoting peace and stability in Somalia: a case study of AMISOM in Mogadishu
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This study set out to assess the contribution of African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) in promoting peace and stability using Mogadishu City in Somalia as a case study. The study was prompted by media reports that AMISOM had faced several challenges in fulfilling its mandate in Somalia. On that basis, the study sought to assess the contribution of AMISOM in promoting peace and stability, relations between AMISOM peace keepers and TFG and, challenges facing AMISOM peace keepers in the process of promoting peace and stability in Somalia. The study adopted an exploratory research design which was best suited for the study to discover new ideas and insights. A total of 58 respondents participated in the study; these were drawn from some members of Somali Transitional Federal Government (TFG), AMISOM forces and, community members. The primary data was collected using thick description, in-depth interviews and focus group discussions. The research findings revealed that AMISOM has made positive contributions in line with its mandate despite the fact that it encountered challenges especially resistance from negative forces especially the Al-Shabaab. The positive contributions included aiding the implementation of the National Security and Stabilization Plan (NSSP), protecting TFG institutions, overseeing the security situation in strategic areas especially in Mogadishu and, facilitating humanitarian operations in Somalia. But there were challenges that affected the AMISOM peace support mission in Somalia. These included Language barrier, inadequate numerical strength, old equipment, weak TFG forces, lack of understanding of the mandate by stakeholders, limited infrastructure to support humanitarian activities and negative propaganda against AMISOM among others. However, there was frequent communication between AMISOM and TFG which acted as a sign of good relations between the forces; sharing of equipment where necessary, sharing information, contacts and links in an attempt to bring peace to Somalia and close connections between AMISOM and TFG forces. This implies that the relations between the two institutions were cordial. The study recommended designing better entry and exit strategies, establishment of a Peace Mission Training Centre, prompt release of troops and financial resources and prioritizing peace operations to support effective peace processes.