Joining AMISOM: Why Six African States Contributed Troops to the African Union Mission in Somalia

Joining AMISOM: Why Six African States Contributed Troops to the African Union Mission in Somalia

Author: 
Williams, Paul D.
Place: 
Oxon
Publisher: 
Taylor & Francis Group
Record type: 
Journal Title: 
Journal of Eastern African Studies
Source: 
Journal of Eastern African Studies, Vol. 12, No.1, May 2018, pp. 172-192
Abstract: 

Deployed to Mogadishu, Somalia in March 2007, the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) became the Union's longest running, largest, most costly, and most deadly operation. Yet, of the 54 AU members, only 6 contributed troops to AMISOM: Uganda (2007), Burundi (2007), Djibouti (2011), Kenya (2012), Sierra Leone (2013) and Ethiopia (2014). This article applies a widely utilized theoretical framework to explain peacekeeping contributions in order to analyse why these six states chose to join AMISOM. It concludes that there is no single or uniform explanation for their decision. Nevertheless, the most common official justifications - assertions that events in Somalia posed a direct security risk to the troop-contributing countries (TCCs) and normative commitments to African solidarity - were often less important than other unacknowledged or downplayed factors. Specifically, a combination of institutional, political, and economic factors was generally more important in understanding why these six states became AMISOM TCCs. Joining AMISOM did help alleviate some regional security concerns but the decision also brought tangible benefits at home to both the TCC governments and their militaries.

Language: 

CITATION: Williams, Paul D.. Joining AMISOM: Why Six African States Contributed Troops to the African Union Mission in Somalia . Oxon : Taylor & Francis Group , . Journal of Eastern African Studies, Vol. 12, No.1, May 2018, pp. 172-192 - Available at: http://library.au.int/joining-amisom-why-six-african-states-contributed-troops-african-union-mission-somalia