Somalia Largest Mobile Network Company -Hormuud Telecom Linked among Top Shabaab Financiers

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Friday November 29, 2019 - 07:15:01 in Wararka by Super Admin
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    Somalia Largest Mobile Network Company -Hormuud Telecom Linked among Top Shabaab Financiers

    Somalia largest mobile telephone network company, Hormuud Telecom has been linked with entities funding and providing logistical support to the Al-Qaeda affiliated Al-Shabaab. The mobile telephone company has been accused of paying millions of shilli

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Somalia largest mobile telephone network company, Hormuud Telecom has been linked with entities funding and providing logistical support to the Al-Qaeda affiliated Al-Shabaab. The mobile telephone company has been accused of paying millions of shillings to the jihadist group for protection of its business in areas still under control of the militant group, a claim the company has refuted.
According to a report published by International Policy Group (IPG), Hormuud Telecom has been generously funding Shabaab’s activities from across Somalia and in turn it has been able to penetrate and set up business in areas still under the control of jihadist group enjoying a complete monopoly of mobile communication services under their protection.

The company has been linked in to supporting Al-Shabaab’s strategy of destroying mobile communication masts in the neighbouring country—Kenya in an effort to expand its business into Southern Somalia and Northern Kenya besides advancing the terror group’s warfare against the Kenyan forces.

 

In late August 2019, Hormuud Telecom issued a series of statement on social and mainstream media alleging that unspecified units of the Kenya Defense Forces (KDF) in the AMISOM contingent were directly or indirectly involved in bombing and destroying its masts in Gedo region of Jubaland State. In making this allegation, Hormuud latched on a well-heeled tactic by involving Shabaab fighters to orchestrate a retaliatory mission in Northern Kenya prefectures where a number of telecommunication masts have so far been destroyed.

The report cites a case in September 2019, when Hormuud was linked to aiding Shabab insurgents to destroy 13 Safaricom base station masts (BTS) at Jabi in Mandera in what was perceived as a retaliation against Kenyan forces for allegedly destroying the Somalia based Telecom’s masts in the Gedo. The report further points that Hormuud use Al-Shabaab to shut out Kenyan telecommunication companies about 50km into North Eastern.

Interestingly Hormuud Telecom was quick to blame Kenya for the destruction of its masts, when Shabab was also destroying Safaricom BTS masts.
From the Al-Shabaab protection, Hormuud Telecom has reportedly been making a fortune by monopolising the telecoms industry while the militant group receive huge taxes and access to its technology in return, assuring them power, wealth and survival.

The company has been adversely been linked in several notable attacks from across Somalia. A report by UN Security Council in 2018 mentioned Hormuud as the key financier of the deadliest Al-Shabaab attack in the capital Mogadishu which killed 582 people in 2017.

Hormuud corporate officials have been to Washington where they sought the support of US Congresswoman Ilhan Abdullahi Omar. The Congresswoman tweeted asking the Somali government and the peace keepers to protect Hormuud and described the company as a key investment in Somalia.

The Al-Qaeda branch in Somalia has heavily relied on the Telecommunication Company where it has used its services in its counter intelligence operations, closely monitoring activities of the company especially when investigating potential spies within its ranks.

This has seen the terror group arrest and kill thousands of people it accused of spying leading to the conclusion that Harakat al Shabaab al Mujahideen (HSM) has enormous control over the largest Somalia based Hormuud Mobile Network Company.
written 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.

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