March 09, 2010
Mogadishu Map: Areas of Control
The Critical Threats Project has produced a map of Mogadishu depicting general areas of control in the Somali capital and highlighting recent events in al Shabaab's ongoing offensive against the Transitional Federal Government (TFG) and the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM). This page will be updated as necessary.
2011 Winter Offensive (February 2011 - March 2011)
2010 Ramadan Offensive (August 2010 - September 2010)
The TFG, backed by AMISOM, has increased the overall area under government control since the end of al Shabaab’s fall 2010 Ramadan offensive. The number of troops securing that area has remained fairly consistent. Al Shabaab regularly conducts disruptive operations in government-controlled districts of Mogadishu. Toward the end of February 2011, however, al Shabaab increased the frequency of attacks and has engaged AMISOM troops, especially Burundian troops in the south of the city, more than previously.
2011 Winter Offensive
Al Shabaab established bases in Yaqshid, Heliwa, and Karan districts in northern Mogadishu, where it prepares for operations in contested districts. It also has safe havens in Abdi Aziz, Wardhigley, and parts of Hawl Wadag districts. Bakara Market, for example, remains under al Shabaab control. Recent reports suggest that in certain strongholds, al Shabaab has barricaded and booby-trapped the streets to control who enters the area and established training centers for militants.
Paul Jarvis contributed to the research behind this map.
2010 Ramadan Offensive
The TFG, backed by AMISOM, maintains control of strategic locations in Mogadishu, including Aden Adde International Airport, the seaport, Villa Somalia, and the route connecting Villa Somalia to the airport, Makka al Mukarama road. AMISOM is headquartered near the airport and controls major bases at the K4 junction, the Jalle Siad military academy, and Villa Somalia. AMISOM and the TFG have established forward-operating bases near al Shabaab safe havens and claim to control over 60 percent of Mogadishu. Districts under TFG and AMISOM’s control include Dharkenley, Wadajir, Waberi, Hamar Jabjab, and Hamar Weyne.
Al Shabaab operates safely out of Yaqshid, Heliwa, and Karan districts, where it has established bases and can prepare for operations. The group has recently gained control over Abdi Aziz and Wardhigley districts and is strongly contesting control over Shibis and Hawl Wadag districts, where it has gained significant ground. Bakara Market, for example, is under al Shabaab control. Hizb al Islam, fighting in support of al Shabaab, generally operates out of Hodan district.
The primary attack zone encompasses Bondhere, Hamar Weyne, Hamar Jabjab, and Waberi districts where there are high-value AMISOM and government targets. Al Shabaab generally executes larger-scale attacks in these districts. Shibis, Hodan, Abdi Aziz, and Hawl Wadag districts experience a more constant level of violence stemming from ground movements and improvised explosive devices (IEDs) planted along transportation routes. Shelling by AMISOM is concentrated on, but not limited to, Bakara Market in Hawl Wadag district because of al Shabaab’s location.
Cody Curran contributed to the research behind this map.