Mukhtar Robow

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Mukhtar Robow
مختار روبوو
Muktar robow.jpg
Deputy Leader of Al-Shabaab
Personal details
Born (1969-10-10) 10 October 1969 (age 47)
Hudur, Somalia
Nationality Somalia
Ethnicity Somali
Religion Islam

Sheikh Mukhtar Robow (Somali: Mukhtaar Rooboow, Arabic: مختار روبوو‎‎), also known as Abu Mansur, is a Somali militant commander. He served as a deputy leader for Al-Shabaab, and was previously a spokesman for the group.

Early life[edit]

Robow was born on the 10th October 1969[1] in Hudur, in the Bakool region in southern Somalia. He studied at a local Qur'anic school, and later continued his religious education in the mosques of Mogadishu as well as those of his home region. A member of the Rahaweyn clan (which is particularly well represented in the Baidoa area), and more specifically of the Leysan sub-clan, Robow also studied Islamic law in the 1990s at the University of Khartoum in Sudan.

Islamic Courts Union and Al-Shabaab[edit]

Robow subsequently returned to Mogadishu and worked for the Saudi Al-Haramain Foundation, which was later accused by the United States of having links with Islamic terrorists. Robow then taught Islamic education to orphans the foundation was looking after. His Arabic nickname "Abu Mansur" reinforces the theory that he has frequented Middle East radical Islamists.

Robow later served as the Deputy Commander of the Islamic Courts Union, which controlled much of the south of Somalia. A hardline and radical Islamist who fought with the Taliban in Afghanistan in the early 2000s, Robow was blacklisted by the United States as a terrorist leader.[2]

Robow appeared in videos with deceased American terrorist Abu Mansoor Al-Amriki.

Robow and other leading Al-Shabaab members challenged the leadership of Ahmed Abdi Godane (Moktar Ali Zubeyr) at Barawe in June 2013. Godane killed two of the leading members, and Robow fled to his home district.[3][4] Godane's forces launched an offensive against Robow's supporters, it was reported in August 2013.[5]

On 23 June 2017, United States Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) removed him Reward for Justice (RFJ) list following discussions was made with the Somali government after a USD $5 million bounty was placed on him for information leading to his location on June 7, 2012.[6][7]

On 13 August 2017, he turned himself over to authorities in Hudur, according to Hassan Hussein Mohamed, Minister of Internal Security for South West State,[8] and was subsequently flown to Mogadishu.

On 15 August, 2017, he held a major press conference in Mogadishu, denouncing Al-Shabaab and reiterating he had left the group in 2012.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Mukhtar Robow". National Counterterrorism Center. Retrieved 6 August 2014. 
  2. ^ "US urged to review Somalia blacklist". Press TV. 12 February 2012. Retrieved 30 August 2012. 
  3. ^ Ugas, Ahmednor (20 September 2013). "Al Shabaab leader speaks out". SomaliCurrent. Retrieved 6 August 2014. 
  4. ^ Abukar, Hassan M. (2 July 2013). "Somalia: The Godane coup and the unraveling of Al-Shabaab". African Arguments. Royal African Society. Retrieved 6 August 2014. 
  5. ^ "Somalia: Alshabab leader assigns a commander to launch fighting against Mukhtar Robow wing". Qalin News. 4 August 2013. Retrieved 6 August 2014. 
  6. ^ "US drops former Al-Shabab leader from 'RFJ List’". Hiiraan Online. 23 June 2017. 
  7. ^ "US withdraws $5m bounty on former Al-Shabaab deputy leader". Africanews. 24 June 2017. 
  8. ^ "Former Al-Shabaab deputy leader surrenders". CNN. 13 August 2017. 

External links[edit]