The German government will conclude military training in Somalia later this year, its foreign ministry said on Thursday.
Berlin has been training Somali forces since 2010 under the framework of European Union Training Mission in Somalia (EUTM). The Germans have frequently cited frustration and lack of progress as an impediment moving forward.
German Foreign Ministry official said the government will withdraw its training commanders from Somalia in March 2018.
“The development of a Somali national army is moving forward only very slowly, in part due to deficits in political and institutional structures, as well as equipment gaps among trained Somali soldiers,” the Foreign Ministry said.
Last year, Germany which has about five trainers in Somalia had extended the mandate for German soldiers in the mission for one year which was supposed to end March this year.
The move comes after the US government’s decision to suspend its aid for Somali Army over corruption concerns.
The ministry noted that they will continue to support the horn of African nation politically.
“The German government is considering options to strengthen its civic engagement in the Horn of Africa in light of the region’s importance,” the ministry noted.
Somalia is hosting trainers from over fifteen European countries who support the government to rebuild the capacity of Somali Army.
Under the military dictatorship of late Mohamed Siyad Barre, Somalia possessed one of the strongest militaries in the continent before the plunged into civil war.
Currently, the nation’s army is poorly equipped and underfunded which is a thorn in the efforts by the forces to stabilize the country.
Somali government also struggles different challenges including rampant corruption, recurrent political crisis, rebel groups and external interferences from foreign countries.