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Al-Shabaab On The Defensive: Is It Time To Celebrate? – Analysis | Citizen Support


Three months after reclaiming the presidential office, Hassan Sheikh Mohamud resolved to root out al-Shabaab from Somalia. The new administration formed a unified front comprising local players, federal member states, religious leaders and external actors to confront al-Shabaab on military, religious and financial grounds.


This coalition put al-Shabaab on the defensive, as recent tactical successes show. This isn’t the first time the group has been defeated militarily. In 2011 it re-emerged from military defeat and extended its grip on the country.


While the state has tried to reach agreement on how to deal with the group, a local revolt against al-Shabaab in Hiiraan, Hirshabelle State, has emerged due to the group’s increasingly harsh governance. Drought has further weakened community resilience.


Militarily the state has supported the uprising. Local militias have received military backing from the government, in turn providing information to state forces. This suggests that the many forces opposing the terror group have aligned their goals and efforts, which is critical for the government’s success.


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