Somalia: UN Envoy ‘appalled’ by deadly terrorist attacks in Baidoa, calls for political unity

Special Representative for Somalia, Nicholas Kay. Photo: AU/UN-IST/David Mutua

7 December 2014 – The top United Nations official in Somalia, Nicholas Kay, has condemned Friday's terrorist attacks in Baidoa that is feared to have killed at least fifteen people with many more wounded, and called for political unity following that country's parliamentary vote of no confidence in its Prime Minister.

According to his office, the Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General (SRSG) deplored the “appalling” terrorist attacks which resulted in numerous casualties, including several local politicians and journalists.

“The use of such indiscriminate tactics against the Somali people demonstrates a shocking disregard for the most basic principles of humanity. Those responsible need to be brought to justice swiftly,” SRSG Kay said.

“The United Nations and AMISOM are supporting the local authorities to evacuate the wounded requiring further medical treatment in Mogadishu. We remain committed to supporting the Somali people as they work to realise their hope for a peaceful and stable future,” he added.

SRSG Kay extended his sincere condolences to the families and friends of all those who have suffered as a result of the attacks.

Also this weekend, the UN Assistance Mission in Somalia (UNSOM) noted Saturday's parliamentary vote of no confidence in the Prime Minister of the Federal Government.

In a statement, UNSOM paid tribute to the Prime Minister work for peacebuilding in Somalia and urged the swift establishment of a new inclusive Government.

“Somalia now needs unity of political purpose between its institutions and leaders and a significant period of stability,” SRSG Kay said.

“The Federal Government and Parliament have important and urgent work to do to help Somalia achieve political, security and development progress in the remaining twenty-one months of their mandate,” he added.

The Federal Parliament could now focus on the passage of key legislation to enable the political transformation of Somalia, in particular laws establishing the National Independent Electoral Commission and the Boundaries and Federation Commission.

“The United Nations remains committed to working with the Federal Government and Somalia's people and political leaders to achieve the objectives set out in the Provisional Constitution, the New Deal Compact for Somalia and Vision 2016,” Mr. Kay said.

The SRSG also recognized that completing the formation of Federal member states is a major challenge for the coming weeks.

“It is important that women, youth and underrepresented groups are enabled to play a full role in these and other political processes,” he added.

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