Ethiopia is a major contributor of soldiers to the African Union Mission In Somalia (AMISOM), the African Union peacekeeping mission in the country.
Ethiopia has withdrawn troops from Somalia, where they had been battling Islamist militants.
It blames a lack of international support for the move, following the European Union’s recent cut in its funding for foreign troops in Somalia.
Ethiopia is a major contributor of soldiers to the AMISOM, the African Union mission in the country.
Ethiopia has recently withdrawn from several other bases, which were quickly occupied by al-Shabab militants.
Officials in Somalia’s Bakol region say some residents have already fled the area since the Ethiopian troops left, fearing an imminent of al-Shabab, which is part of al-Qaeda.
Ethiopian Communications Minister Getachew Reda told the BBC that the troops withdrawn from south-western Somalia were not part of AMISOM.
“It is a separate batch deployed to provide support for AMISOM and Somali armed forces,” Mr Getachew Reda said.
He also denied reports that the withdrawal was linked to unrest at home which led to a state of emergency being declared, saying there were enough troops to handle that.
Read more on BBC News
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