Columbia International Affairs Online: Working Papers

CIAO DATE: 09/2010

Somalia's Endless Transition: Breaking the Deadlock

Andre Le Sage

June 2010

Institute for National Strategic Studies


Somalia’s Transitional Federal Government (TFG) was given a second lease on life in January 2009, after successful peace negotiations in Djibouti produced new TFG leadership and yielded substantial international backing. However, the TFG remains weak and has yet to develop new political alliances or military capabilities that provide traction against Islamist insurgent groups. The insurgents themselves—including al Shabab and Hizbul Islamia—are also weak and internally divided. Local and international efforts to end the ongoing stalemate in Somalia have been frustrated, resulting in diverging strategic prescriptions for the way ahead.