Since 2010, EUTM Somalia has contributed to the training of approximately 5.000 Somali soldiers with a focus on the training of Non-Commissioned Officers (NCOs), Junior Officers, specialists and trainers. Training was initially delivered in Uganda due to the political and security situation in Somalia, in close collaboration with the Ugandan People’s Defence Forces (UPDF). The training of the Somali National Armed Forces (SNAF) was focused on commanders from company to battalion level, in addition to specialist training in the areas of military police, civilian-military cooperation, intelligence and combat engineering. This training is reinforced with modules on international humanitarian law and human rights, and the protection of civilians.
On 22 January 2013, the Council of the European Union extended the mandate of EUTM Somalia to March 2015. This third mandate implied a significant change of focus for the Mission with the inclusion of strategic advisory and mentoring activities in addition to training. Whilst still operating from the Mission Headquarters in Kampala, Uganda, and with a training base in Bihanga, Western Uganda, the Mission also had a Liaison Office in Nairobi, Kenya, a Support Cell in Brussels and a Mentoring, Advisory and Training Element (MATE HQ) in the Somali capital city of Mogadishu. This structure changed in the first months of 2014 when the centre of gravity of EUTM Somalia shifted with the relocation of the HQ to Mogadishu. As a natural progression to this development, all advisory, mentoring and training activities are now conducted in Mogadishu.
On 16 March 2015, the 4th Mandate of the Mission prolonged EUTM Somalia’s activities until December 2016 in order to focus on training delivery including leadership and specialised courses that were defined jointly with the Somali authorities. In addition, the mission strengthened its advisory component aimed at building long term capacity within the Somali Ministry of Defence (MoD) and SNA General Staff. This advisory work targeted each of the functional areas of the General Staff including operations, plans, logistics, administration, and legal affairs. Furthermore, an effort to pass the responsibility of all the training activities to SNA has been carried out through delivery of ‘Train the Trainer’ courses.
On 12 December 2016, the Council of European Union agreed the 5th Mandate for EUTM Somalia extending the mission until 31 December 2018 with a budget of close to €23 million. During this period, EUTM-S will utilise the ‘Three Pillars’ of Training, Mentoring and Advising to provide political and strategic level military advice and mentoring to Somali authorities. EUTM Somalia has established close links with the Federal Government of Somalia and the Defence and Security institutions of the country in order to contribute to the stabilisation of Somalia at the political and strategic levels whilst maintaining a focus on improving the capability of the SNAF so that they may establish sustainable security across the country.
EUTM Somalia operates in close cooperation and coordination with other international actors; in particular the United Nations, the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) and the United States of America’s US MCC. EUTM Somalia has become well known and highly respected by the International Community, and has established enduring cooperation with stakeholders and key players in the region.