UK military personnel to support UN mission to tackle Al-Shabaab in Somalia

2 May 2016 (Last Updated May 2nd, 2016 18:30)

The UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) has deployed troops for a UN-backed mission to tackle the threat posed by extremist group Al-Shabaab in Somalia.

The UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) has deployed troops for a UN-backed mission to tackle the threat posed by extremist group Al-Shabaab in Somalia.

Military personnel from Force Troop Command, 1 Div and Field Army training will support the African Union Mission to Somalia's (AMISOM) peacekeeping efforts against the militant group.

The troops will provide medical, logistical and engineering services to support the mission.

Up to 70 additional personnel will be deployed to the country later in the year.

"This deployment is another demonstration of the flexibility and global reach of our armed forces."

Al-Shabaab, a part of Al-Qaeda, is battling against the Federal Government of Somalia and AMISOM.

It has been designated as a terrorist organisation by Australia, Canada, the UAE, the UK and the US.

UK Defence Secretary Michael Fallon said: "This deployment is another demonstration of the flexibility and global reach of our armed forces.

"Alongside our efforts in Iraq, Syria and Nigeria, it shows our determination to tackle terrorism wherever it rears its head."

In September, UK Prime Minister David Cameron committed to sending troops to Somalia and South Sudan.

The commitment is also a part of the Strategic Defence and Security Review (SDSR) pledge to double the number of UK troops on UN peacekeeping tasks.

AMISOM replaced and subsumed the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD) Peace Support Mission to Somalia (IGASOM).