KDF fails to en­force ban on Shabaab char­coal sale, UN says

Business Daily (Kenya) - - TOP NEWS - Kevin J Kel­ley New York/united Na­tions

Kenya De­fence Forces units as­signed to the African Union Mis­sion in So­ma­lia (Ami­som) are fail­ing to en­force a ban on char­coal ex­ports by al-shabaab, a team of United Na­tions mon­i­tors charges in a new re­port.

Shabaab earns at least $10 mil­lion (Sh1.03 bil­lion) a year by ship­ping char­coal from ports in south­ern So­ma­lia where KDF units are sta­tioned, the UN panel says.

“Ami­som, whose Kenyan De­fence Forces con­tin­gents re­main de­ployed at the ports of Kis­mayo and Buur Gaabo, has nei­ther as­sisted the So­mali

au­thor­i­ties in im­ple­ment­ing the char­coal ban nor fa­cil­i­tated Mon­i­tor­ing Group ac­cess to char­coal ex­port­ing ports,” the re­port states.

Poor im­ple­men­ta­tion of the five-year-old UN Se­cu­rity Coun­cil ban “en­ables AlShabaab fi­nanc­ing and un­der­mines counter-ter­ror­ism and counter-in­sur­gency ef­forts in So­ma­lia,” the re­port ob­serves. As an ex­am­ple of Shabaab’s con­tin­u­ing abil­ity to thwart counter-in­sur­gency ef­forts, the UN team cites an at­tack on a KDF base at Kul­biyow on the Kenya-so­ma­lia bor­der that killed at least 67 Kenyan sol­diers.

Shabaab mil­i­tants have also taken the lives of scores of civil­ians and po­lice of­fi­cers in­side Kenya in the past two years.

The UN’S So­ma­lia and Eritrea Mon­i­tor­ing Group said last year that Kenyan troops as­signed to Ami­som were re­ceiv­ing $2 (Sh206) per bag of char­coal il­le­gally shipped from the port of Kis­mayo.

Kenyan forces’ col­lu­sion in the il­licit trade may have brought them $12 mil­lion (Sh1.3 bil­lion) in pro­ceeds, the 2016 re­port sug­gested.

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