#Araweelo News Network

ANKARA, (ANN) – Turkey will provide maritime security support to Somalia to help the African country defend its territorial waters, an official from the Turkish defence ministry said on Thursday.

Turkey and Somalia signed a defence and economic cooperation agreement earlier this month during Somali defence minister’s visit to Ankara.

Commenting on the details of the agreement, a Turkish defence ministry official speaking on the condition of anonymity said Ankara had been providing training to Somali army for more than ten years.

The agreement aims to enhance defence cooperation between Turkey and Somalia, the official said.

“Upon request from Somalia, we will provide support in the field of maritime security, as we did in the field of fight against terrorism,” he said.

“We will help Somalia develop its capacity and capabilities to combat illegal and irregular activities in its territorial waters.”

Turkey has become a close ally of the Somali government in recent years. Ankara has built schools, hospitals and infrastructure and provided scholarships for Somalis to study in Turkey.

In 2017, Turkey opened its biggest overseas military base in Mogadishu. Turkey also provides training to Somali military and police.

Source: (Reuters)