The operation of the ATMIS forces in Somalia confirmed by the African Union that this year will end.

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The representative of the African Union in Somalia, Mohamed El-Amine Souef, has confirmed that the African Union Mission in Somalia (ATMIS) will leave the country next December.

However, the representative of the African Union said that there will be a new operation following the departure of ATMIS, which he said was behind an official request made by Somalia.

“Somalia’s formal request for a follow-up mission underscores the need for continued international support to stabilize Somalia,” Souef said in a statement in Mogadishu.

The statement of the African Union envoy follows his visit on Monday to Dhobley in Jubaland administration to strengthen the ongoing peace support operations and to raise the morale of the African Union forces in Southern Somalia.

ATMIS is preparing for the reduction of 4,000 additional soldiers, who will be withdrawn from Somalia in June.

The African Union mission has withdrawn 5,000 soldiers from Somalia and transferred 13 centers to the Somali security forces during the first and second phase of the reduction last year.

During his visit, Souef urged the Kenyan forces to be vigilant against Al-Shabaab, and praised the way they prepared the Somali security forces to take over security responsibility from ATMIS.