UAE can’t help if Somalia seeks to self-destruct
What the UAE has provided to Somalia over the decades and since a civil war and famine ravaged the latter has not been provided by any other state. The UAE’s decision to end its training operations in Somalia, where they have been helping the country raise an army since 2014 does not come as a surprise, especially after Somali security forces detained an Emirati airplane earlier this month and seized money that was allocated for supporting the Somali army and for paying Somali trainees.
UAE’s steadfast support
The UAE has stood by the brotherly Somali people for about a quarter of a century, when few countries paid attention to the country. It tried to help it mitigate its suffering and tried to ensure security and stability in Somalia. To achieve this purpose, it spent at least AED 1 billion in humanitarian, relief and developmental assistance.
Somebody today wants to exploit Somalia, the suffering of its people and their divisions in order to involve the country in conflicts which it has nothing to do with. It’s unfortunate that there are some Somalis who are willing to sell themselves to their exploiters and help them further divide the people and land. The triumvirate of destruction — Qatar, Turkey and Iran — is present in Somalia and it aims to control the Horn of Africa from this country.
The means to achieve this control is via extremists and terrorists whom the regime of Hamad bin Jassim and Hamad bin Khalifa supplied with money and weapons and turned them into mercenaries in their own homelands, taking orders from those who are exploiting their cause instead of helping them resolve it.
Somalia does not need any more weapons and it does not need the money with which to start internecine feuds. It needs someone to train their regular army and help them achieve security and stability in the face of extremism and not support it and fund it. The UAE has fulfilled its responsibility, in cooperation with the UN, on several fronts in Somalia. When it was faced with violations of diplomatic traditions and norms and of the memorandum of understanding between it and Somalia, it decided to suspend its operations of establishing the Somali army after building three training centers and a hospital, sent medical teams to treat the Somalis and succeeded in training thousands of Somali soldiers and other security forces and after paying the wages to more than 2,400 Somali soldiers.
The UAE went to help Somalia and its brotherly people. However, when chaos spreads the UAE cannot continue to remain in a land of anarchy, exploitation and dirty money. It cannot stay with those who trade with the lives of innocent people.
Mohammed Al-Hammadi is the Editor-in-Chief of Al Ittihad newspaper and Executive Director of editing and publishing at the Abu Dhabi Media Company. He founded and was Editor-in-Chief of the Arabic edition of National Geographic magazine, and has held numerous positions in journalism since joining Al Ittihad in 1994. Al-Hammadi has been a columnist for more than 15 years, including writing a daily column for seven years and producing a weekly political column in Al Ittihad since 2001. He has also worked as a parliamentary editor for seven years, covering the proceedings of the Federal National Council in the United Arab Emirates. In addition to being an active participant on social networks, Al-Hammadi has an interest in new media and is currently working on a project to ease the transition from traditional to digital and smart media. Al-Hammadi has received numerous awards and is a member of a number of organizations and federations. He features regularly in broadcast media as a regional political commentator and has authored several books including Time of Ordeal (2008), The UAE Democracy (2009) and The Fall of the Muslim Brotherhood (2016). Twitter: @MEalhammadi.