A Somali dealer holds a weapon looted from a former United Arab Emirates (UAE) military training camp during a Reuters interview in Mogadishu, Somalia April 25, 2018. REUTERS/Feisal Omar
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At least 600 weapons were stolen in the past week from a former United Arab Emirates-run training center in Somalia's capital Mogadishu and are for sale in the city, weapons dealers said Wednesday. The weapons, including new Kalashnikov assault rifles and Chinese versions of them, were stolen by Somali National Army soldiers who had been trained by the UAE at its facility, three Somali men who purchased weapons from the soldiers told Reuters. The UAE-trained troops began stealing weapons from the facility shortly after the program was disbanded, the dealers said.Gunfire broke out Monday at the former training center where some of the troops were still camped out, and UAE-trained troops who were still there fled with as many weapons as they could, before a rival group took over the facility.The dealers showed Reuters five weapons they said they bought from the soldiers.Ali said they purchased the weapons for $700, a significant discount on the current price of $1,350 in Mogadishu for a new Kalashnikov.The dealers then began last night reselling the weapons at $1,000 each, he said.
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