Ecomig force to be sliced to 500 troops

Ecomig force to be sliced to 500 troops

The regional force deployed to The Gambia to flush out former dictator Yahya Jammeh will reduce their personnel in the West African nation to 500 from 7000.

The force will start withdrawing most its troops starting February 19. President Adama Barrow has extended the mandate of the Ecomig force until May and may renew it.

The force will protect President Barrow, senior government officials and the presidential compound.

Jammeh was forced into exile after Ecomig forces entered the country last month. He fled to Equatorial Guinea after a last-minute diplomatic effort by Guinean and Mauritanian presidents to avert military action.

Barrow and his military adviser, a former army chief, Lt. Gen. Masanneh Kinteh are working on reforming the security services.

Kinteh has been overseeing the cooperation between the Gambian army and the regional forces. The two forces carry out joint security patrols of the capital.

The Gambia’s army and police intervention unit have been implicated in many of the country’s human rights abuses. An indemnity law protects officers from being dragged to court for abuses committed.

Comments are closed.