Monday, December 25, 2006

Ethopia gets backing from African Union

Africa: Ethopia is going to be more about taking hearts and minds instead of winning them over in this conflict.

The African Union says Ethiopia has the right to intervene militarily in Somalia as it feels threatened by an Islamic militia operating there. An official also admitted the African Union had failed to "react properly and adequately" to the Somali situation. Ethiopian jets bombed two airports in Somalia on Monday in support of the transitional government's battle against the Union of Islamic Courts. Ethiopia's prime minister has said his country is "at war" with the Islamists. Fighting had flared last week between the Union of Islamic Courts (UIC), which holds most of central and southern Somalia, and Somali government forces, based around the southern town of Baidoa. Ethiopia admitted for the first time on Sunday its troops were fighting in the country. The UN estimates at least 8,000 Ethiopian troops may be supporting the transitional government.

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