1600 German Troops Head To
Somalia To 'Fight Terrorism'
By Ken Opala
The Daily Nation - Somalia

Two German warships with 1,600 troops aboard arrive in Djibouti next Wednesday to take part in operations against suspected terrorists in Somalia.
Sources said the contingent, the biggest movement of German troops outside its borders since the Second World war, joins a allied forces that dismantled the al Qaeda network in Afghanistan forced out the Taliban regime.
Sources in Nairobi said the Germans would take part in the second round of the war on terrorism which analysts predict will target Somalia and possibly neighbouring Sudan.
Somalia has been without a commonly accepted central government since the overthrow of Mr Siad Barre in 1991.
A transition government established with the support of neighbouring countries recently has denied reports that Osama bin Laden's al Qaeda terrorist network has cells in the country, a view that American authorities do not share.
The warships, from the German city of Hanover, are expected off the coast of Djibouti on January 2.
Reports of Germany's participation in the new phase of the war came amid calls by Somali warlords for international military intervention in the country.
Three Somali factions said radical Islamic groups, al Qaeda and al-Itihad, had several bases in the Horn of Africa country.
Somaliaís transitional government has strongly denied the presence of terrorist cells, and diplomats have warned that opposition warlords may use the US war on terror to try and damage their opponents.
At a news conference in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa, warlords Hassan Mohammed Nur Shatigudud, General Abdullahi Nur Gabyow and Hussein Aideed said foreign intervention was needed to stop extremist groups going underground.
But diplomats have warned that militia chiefs, who flourished in the chaos of civil war and control large parts of Somalia, have seized on the US anti-terror campaign as their own route back to power.

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