UN and international partners call for resolution of Somali political crisis

A policeman directs traffic at a checkpoint in downtown Mogadishu, Somalia. UN Photo/Tobin Jones

27 May 2014 – The United Nations, the European Union and the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) today issued a joint appeal for a resolution of the political crisis in Somalia, adding that they stand ready to hold to account anyone who poses an obstacle to progress in the Horn of Africa nation.

“Ongoing political instability does not serve the interests of Somalia or its people. Somalia cannot afford a return to the cycle of deadlock and infighting between political actors that paralysed governments since 2000,” said a joint statement issued by the three partners.

They noted that the development of a federal system, the constitutional review process and preparation for 2016 elections are behind schedule.

“The Constitution sets out clear roles and tasks for all Federal institutions, including Parliament, the Executive and the Presidency. Somalia needs continuity and stability. But it also needs faster and greater delivery by all,” they stated.

The statement called on the Executive, led by Prime Minister Abdiweli Sheikh Ahmed, to take “timely and decisive” action to create greater national unity, improve security and expedite progress on federalism, the constitution and elections.

“International partners stand ready to support all moves that will enhance peacebuilding and state-building and to hold to account anyone who poses an obstacle to such progress,” it added.

The statement comes in the wake of the 24 May attack on the Somali Federal Parliament by the militant group known as Al-Shabaab, which had also claimed responsibility for killing two parliamentarians in Mogadishu in less than 48 hours last month.

The UN, EU and IGAD said Saturday’s attack shows the need to redouble efforts towards peace and state-building in Somalia.

Briefing the Security Council last week, Nicholas Kay, the Secretary-General’s Special Representative and head of the UN Assistance Mission in Somalia (UNSOM), noted that while the new Government has injected fresh momentum, progress on state-building has not been as fast as needed.

He recalled that when he last briefed the Council in March, the Federal Government was close to finalizing a detailed blueprint for building a Federal Somalia, revising and implementing the constitution, and preparing for elections in 2016. “Unfortunately, this critical plan, with timelines and benchmarks, remains pending,” he stated.


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