MOGADISHU, Somalia – A Turkish military training camp is set to open in the Somali capital Mogadishu next month, the Somali defense minister said Thursday.
Abdirashid Abdullahi Mohamed said in a statement that the camp which had been under construction for the last two years will open this September.
“We will begin deploying soldiers at the facility. Our army and other forces will receive training at the camp,” he said.
He added that the camp will help strengthen the Somali Army.
The facility which is Turkey’s largest overseas military camp is spread over 4 square kilometers (1.54 square miles) and has the capacity to train more than 1,500 troops at a time.
It also holds three military residential complexes and schools.
More than 200 Turkish military personnel will come to the facility to train the Somali Armed Forces and provide security to the compound, according to the Turkish mission in Somalia.
Turkey opened its largest embassy in Mogadishu last year, to help the east African country fight drought.
More than 6 million people — half of the country’s population — is facing severe drought and a cholera outbreak, which claimed at least 1,000 lives this year, according to the UN.