At least eight Somali children were rescued from Al-Shabaab kidnappers in Bakool region of Somalia by security forces. The children are believed to have been kidnapped from rural areas of Bay and Bakool by the Al-Qaeda affiliated militant group.
The children below the age of 15 years were rescued while being transported to an Al-Shabaab training camp outside the town of Hudur, in the south Western Bakool region of Somalia.
Following on intelligence tip-offs, security forces intercepted and captured two drivers of the motorcycles transporting the children.
Al-Shabaab is known to boost its ranks by kidnapping children, the terrorist group also intimidates parents to give up their children before putting them through a rigorous indoctrination process within their camps.
Through these kidnappings, Al-Shabaab has been able to ask for ransoms to finance its operations.
Also, it has been documented in special reports, cases of the Islamist Al-Shabaab militia routinely abducting teenage girls to work as servants in the militants camps besides forcing them to marry fighters.
Young children who go through a process of radicalization and brainwashing are less likely to defect or question Al-Shabaab actions later, one of the reasons the practice appeals to the terrorist group.
Meanwhile, U.S. military forces in support of Somali security forces, announced to have conducted two precision airstrikes in Middle Jubba Region’s Jilib town two days ago killing two Al-Shabaab fighters and causing destruction of one facility belonging to the group.
By Shmuel Yosef Agnon
Shmuel Yosef Agnon is a Senior Writer and Editor at the Strategic Intelligence (SI). Specializes in writing intelligence reports, geopolitics, military intelligence and crime reports. Agnon holds a Bachelor of Arts in mass media and journalism, and a master’s degree in international media relations from Winchester, University, England.