France begins arming Kenyans against al-Shabaab
Wed Oct 26, 2011 7:59PM
Ramin Mazaheri, Press TV, Paris
A few days after French planes stopped Ghadaffi in his tracks, France announced it will arm Kenya in their efforts against the group Al-Shabaab. A Kenyan military spokesman and residents of Southern Somalia said the French navy bombed a town near an al-Shabaab base. France has denied involvement.
Kenya has launched an offensive in response to the kidnapping of four Europeans, but Al-Shabaab controls much of southern central Somalia.
The African Union has struggled to maintain order in the capital of Mogadishu, but many are wary of French interference.
It's an African and an Arab issue and they have to come to an agreement - with the endorsement of the United Nations. But they are the only people who have the duty and the legitimacy to provide order. The westerners, on matter who they are - they British, the Italians, the French - they will always be perceived as enemies of Islam.
Somalia has defied attempts at foreign intervention before, with a UN effort, led by the United States, failing in the 1990s.
Shortly after France's announcement two bombs detonated in Nairobi, killing one and wounding more than 20.
Investigations are ongoing, but many believe they could be Al-Shabaab's first retaliatory strikes against France's involvement.