|Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York|
PRESS CONFERENCE BY SECRETARY-GENERAL’S SPECIAL REPRESENTATIVE FOR SOMALIA
All Security Council members agreed on the need to foster an all-inclusive dialogue with stakeholders in Somalia who could help establish peace and security, while renouncing violence and extremism, François Lonseny Fall, the Secretary-General’s Special Representative for that country, said at a Headquarters press conference today.
Mr. Fall, recalling his briefing to the Council, said he had described the latest developments concerning Somalia’s security and terrible humanitarian situation, especially in Mogadishu, the capital, as well as the need to implement Security Council resolution 1744 (2007). The international community should fund the African Union troops in Somalia as soon as possible.
Following the Transitional Federal Government’s decision to return to the country’s capital, he said, President Abdullahi Yusuf had come under mortar attack in Mogadishu after presenting a draft road map for the Transitional Federal Institutions to conduct a transition that should be concluded in 2009.
Asked what more the United Nations and the international community could do to support the African Union peacekeeping mission, he said that, while the mission was not yet a United Nations operation, the Organization was already helping with formation of a police force, reform of the security forces and establishment of the rule of law and good governance, among other things. The United Nations was willing to send all technical assistance necessary to African Union troops on the ground.
In response to another question, he said everybody knew Mogadishu was not secure and that it suffered daily attacks. The decision to move to Mogadishu was a Government decision. Now that the President had moved to Mogadishu, it was the African Union mission’s responsibility to provide protection for the Government and the President.
Asked about his contacts with the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC), Mr. Fall said he had invited members of OIC to encourage those who had good links with Yemen to join in the ongoing consolidation process in Somalia. It was encouraging that OIC wished to contribute more to peacekeeping and to a political settlement in Somalia. It had already decided to create a $100 million fund for peacebuilding, peacekeeping and reconstruction.
He said he was encouraging moderate elements of the Islamic Courts who had renounced violence and terrorism to join the peace process. The Transitional Federal Government was encouraged to open the door to all moderate Islamic Courts elements who could contribute to peace, security and reconciliation.
Responding to another correspondent’s questions, the Special Representative said the humanitarian agencies should be encouraged to work wherever possible, as the situation in Somalia was very bad. In order to advance the political process, there must be an inclusive dialogue, without which there was no possibility for any reconciliation. The “4.5 formula” [four of five parts representation in Transitional Federal Institutions was reserved for the four main clans and the fifth for the minority clans] was the basis for the transitional period. It was a fundamental decision taken by the Somalis themselves.
* *** *