Jubbaland state has restarted Somali charcoal exports years after the UN security council found it to be funding the Al-Qaeda-aligned Al-Shabab extremists and placed it under embargo, Somali official says.
The official who asked not to be named said the secret resumption of the charcoal export started Wednesday as 15 boats docked at Kismayo port, located about 500 kilometers south of Mogadishu.
The boats said to be belonging to India and Arab countries are currently waiting to be loaded with bags of charcoal transported from Bar-Illaan area under a heavy escort by local Jubbaland forces.
Sources in Kismayo revealed to Radio Shabelle that businessmen behind the charcoal export are close allies of Jubbaland president Ahmed Madobe who maintains a bond relationship with the UAE.
Early this week, a boat named Al Safa 381980 carrying 1,500 bags of charcoal sailed from Burgabo, a small coastal town situated south of Kismayo city in Lower Jubba region to Iran and the UAE.
In February 2012, the UN Security Council banned charcoal exports from war-torn Somalia to stop funds for Al-Shabab which is fighting to topple the Western-backed Somali government.
UN says Kenyan defense forces [KDF] who are currently part of African Union Mission in Somalia [AMISOM], has failed to stop charcoal trade at the port of Kismayo.