MOGADISHU, April 10 (Xinhua) -- Visiting British Armed Forces Minister Mark Lancaster on Tuesday lauded the African Union troops in Somalia for securing the country and reducing the threat of terrorism.
Lancaster, who had held talks with senior AU mission officials and force commanders in Mogadishu said they discussed the transitioning of security responsibilities from AMISOM to the Somali security forces, and the British support to the AU mission.
"We have discussed how potentially we can do more to support the mission, but equally talking about how we can progress the situation here in Somalia over the coming months and years," he said in a statement issued by the AU mission.
Lancaster paid tribute to the work of AMISOM over the last eleven years and the sacrifices that have been made to secure the Horn of Africa nation.
"Without doubt, unless the good work of AMISOM over the last eleven years had happened, then Somalia would not be on the course of progress that it is today," Lancaster said.
The African Union has committed to further degrading militant group al-Shabab, and implementing the transition process by continuing joint AMISOM-Somalia National Army (SNA) efforts in executing these tasks.
Special Representative of the Chairperson of the African Union Commission (SRCC) for Somalia Francisco Madeira said the minister's visit shows how Britain has taken so much interest in what AMISOM is doing in Somalia.