“Their conditions are improving, and moral is high. We take this opportunity to express both our sympathy and solidarity, and to also condole with the government and people of Uganda for the loss of lives last week,” said Ambassador Souef.
The officials were briefed on the recovery status of the soldiers by the Commanding Officer of the Level II Hospital, Lt. Col. Dr. Godfrey Ssemakula Ngobya. Those in need of specialised care have already been airlifted to hospitals outside Somalia.
Uganda’s Acting Ambassador to Somalia, Maj. Gen. (Rtd) Nathan Mugisha, noted that the Uganda troops remain firm in their resolve to fulfill the ATMIS mandate despite last week’s attack on their base.
“We are containing the situation, reassessing, and proceeding as scheduled. The incident will not distract us. We will continue with the Somalia stabilisation processes, supporting the Federal Government, the Somali National Army, and the people so that they can have stability, economic development, and transformation,” Maj. Gen. (Rtd) Mugisha said.
President Yoweri Museveni on weekend announced the deaths of 54 Ugandan soldiers in an al-Shabab attack on a base housing African Union peacekeepers in Somalia.
Museveni’s statement on Saturday comes a week after al-Shabab fighters stormed the base in Bulamarer, 130 kilometres (80 miles) southwest of the Somali capital, Mogadishu.
The armed group claimed it carried out suicide bomb attacks on May 26 and killed 137 soldiers.
Museveni said on Saturday that the Uganda People’s Defence Forces (UPDF) had since recaptured the base from the al-Qaeda-linked armed group.
“Our soldiers demonstrated remarkable resilience and reorganised themselves, resulting in the recapture of the base by Tuesday,” the president said.
Museveni said last week that there had been Ugandan casualties but had not given further details about the attack on the troops, who are serving in the ATMIS.
ATMIS, which has 22,000 troops, has been assisting Somalia’s federal government in its war against al-Shabab since 2022 when it replaced the AU Mission in Somalia (AMISOM).