Boko Haram fighters were trained in Somalia before returning to Nigeria, Somalia’s President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud , said yesterday.
He spoke at a security conference in Germany.
“Without a stable Somalia, the whole region of the Horn of Africa will remain unstable and by and large, the African continent. There are proofs and evidence that (for) some time Boko Haram has been trained in Somalia and they went back to Nigeria,” he said.
“The terrorists are so linked together, they are associated and so organised, (that) we the world we need to be so organised,” he said.
It was not clear from his comments whether he believed al Shabaab was still training Boko Haram fighters, who have pledged allegiance to Islamic State militants in Syria and Iraq.
Somalia’s al Shabaab, which has links to al Qaeda and wants to overthrow the Somali government and impose a harsh version of Islamic law, claimed responsibility for a blast this month that punched a hole in the fuselage of a plane.
Somalia, plagued by political in-fighting, corruption and attacks by al Shabaab insurgents, has recently made limited progress towards creating a functioning political system.
The Federal Government, the World Bank, the European Union, and the United Nations (UN) have concluded a two-week recovery and assessment mission in the Northeastern States ravaged by insurgency as part of its on-going Recovery and Peace Building Assessment (RPBA) programme.
Led by the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs), Dr. Mariam Masha, the recovery and assessment team visited Adamawa, Taraba, Gombe, Bauchi, Borno and Yobe states.
A statement by the Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity to the Vice President, Mr. Laolu Akande, said the team actively engaged with governors, decision-makers civil society organisations, private sector players, traditional rulers, the Internally Displaced Persons (IDPs), emergency management, humanitarian and relief agencies and other active partners in the recovery efforts in the affected states.
The statement said: “The field visit by the technical and humanitarian experts from the global institutions, the statement said, primarily focused on validating the processes through which data are to be collected and how to develop internationally acceptable mechanisms to maintain contact with focal points in all the States.
“This assessment will also form the pivot for planning a broad-based public sector recovery programme for the Northeast, as well as leverage, synchronise and inform the financing initiatives and projects of Nigeria’s development partners, civil society organisations and private sector groups and organisations,” it said.