NAIROBI (Kaab TV) – In the wake of the Somali Prime Minister’s public endorsement of support for the Palestinian Hamas militant group, known for its armed attacks on civilians in Israel, alarming developments have surfaced.
Reports indicate that hundreds of recently trained Somali forces have deserted, raising significant security concerns.
According to high-ranking officers who chose to remain anonymous, the young forces, trained in Eritrea and sponsored by Qatar, have defected with their weapons.
Some have reportedly joined clan militia groups, while others are awaiting affiliation with a newly emerging resistance group named Jaysh al-Islam.
Jaysh al-Islam, allegedly led by members of the Muslim Brotherhood in Somalia, including figures from the country’s political elite, poses a potential threat as it, allegedly, seeks to establish a robust Islamist government.
A diplomatic source disclosed that the Eritrean-trained forces, initially intended to combat Al-Shabaab, have instead chosen to align with this new Islamist faction.
The diplomatic source explained, “Some have cited lack of payment, but in reality, the majority were either former members of the Muslim Brotherhood seeking military training in Eritrea. It is deeply concerning that they have now decided to join a new Islamist group.”
The emergence of Jaysh al-Islam
A recent meeting at Safari Hotel in Mogadishu revealed the emergence of Jaysh al-Islam, with a senior commander issuing directives.
Sources close to the group suggest their aspiration is to establish a full-fledged Islamist government post the African Union troop’s departure, reminiscent of Mohamed Morsi’s government in Egypt.
“There were discussions about managing security after the African Union Forces leave and establishing a completely Islamist government, similar to Mohamed Morsi’s government,” revealed an insider, referring to the former Egyptian Muslim Brotherhood president who died in 2019.
Estimates suggest that 700 to 1200 well-trained individuals have joined Jaysh al-Islam, with their current base kept undisclosed.
Beyond the military aspect, the Muslim Brotherhood has reportedly made significant investments in education, healthcare, and businesses, particularly in Mogadishu.
Intelligence reports highlight a surge in the number of Arab-origin migrants entering Mogadishu to assume roles as doctors or lecturers.
The Muslim Brotherhood, already influential within Somalia, has gained added impetus with many current government officials being current or former members. Prime Minister Hamza Abdi Barre’s recent announcement of support for Hamas has further fueled the group’s motivation.
Security sources indicate a substantial number of government officials, ministerial directors, civil servants, and a majority of intelligence officers have affiliations with the Muslim Brotherhood, prompting growing concerns.
The group, known for endorsing political violence, according to review findings by the British Parliament, shares ideological roots with Hamas, an offshoot of the Brotherhood.
Presently, the primary state supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood are Qatar and Turkey. However, as of 2015, Bahrain, Egypt, Russia, Syria, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates designate the organization as a terrorist entity, complicating the geopolitical landscape while in 2017 Trump U.S administration suggested designating the group as foreign terrorist organisation.