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“Al-Shabab-controlled territory in Somalia is becoming a safe haven for terrorists from around the world,” the 13 members said. “The United States must not sit back. — Extremists in Somalia have already made clear their intentions to harm us, and if they have not done so already, they will soon seek capabilities to carry out attacks in the United States.”

The letter said the U.S. should offer regional states “extensive financial, material and logistical support” to improve security.

Some analysts, though, said that simply sending in more troops is unlikely to solve the problem.

“The current situation in Somalia just does not call for a large peacekeeping operation,” said David Shinn, a former U.S. ambassador to Ethiopia. “AU troops cannot police all of Somalia.”

Mr. Shinn, a professor at George Washington University and one of the coordinators of U.S. policy in Somalia in the early 1990s, said the failure of U.S. and U.N. involvement in the country showed large-scale foreign intervention would not work. “That was not the solution then, and it will not be now,” Mr. Shinn said.

Somalia’s weak transitional government welcomed the commitment of more troops, but said that long-term peace in Somalia depends on building up the government’s security forces.

“We really believe strongly that if the Somali government army were given the support they need, then AMISOM would only be a kind of supporting force,” Somali Foreign Minister Yusuf Hassan Ibrahim said.

The internal IGAD report, though, showed how far Somalia’s forces have to go. The Somali troops do not have a physical headquarters. Equipment and weapons held by Somali forces, including ammunition, are not accounted for.

Somali “forces are not assigned barracks or camps and are staying wherever they can get accommodation,” said the report, adding that there is “no formal and effective system of receiving and accounting for returning trainees from neighboring countries.”

In an ominous sign of what international forces in Somalia might face, the opposition group Alliance for the Re-Liberation of Somalia warned against new troop deployment.

“The Somali people will be united to defend their country forcefully and fiercely from any foreign aggression or military occupation,” the statement said.