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Somalia, Kenya hold talks for first time since ICJ verdict

Mogadishu (SD) – Somalia’s Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Mohamed Abdirizak Mohamud has held talks with Kenya’s Ambassador to Somalia Lucas Tumbo in Mogadishu more than two weeks after Kenya lost ICJ maritime border dispute with its neighbouring Somalia.

In a statement, Somali ministry for foreign affairs said both officials agreed to work on the process to build on the Joint Commission for Cooperation, which was agreed upon by Somalia’s Prime Minister and Kenya’s President during their meeting in August.

“The Foreign Ministers of Somalia and Kenya agreed, in their meeting in Mogadishu, to expedite the third session of the Joint Committee to move forward in areas of common interest, including trade, investment, security, defense, agriculture, tourism, and people-to-people relations,” the statement reads in part.

On 12th October. a fifteen-judge panel of the International Court of Justice (ICJ) rejected Kenya’s claim that there had been an agreed maritime boundary with Somalia and ruled that the maritime border should run on equidistant or on a median line as suggested by Somalia.

The ICJ ruled that contrary to Kenya’s assertations, there was never a formal agreement with Somalia regarding their maritime boundaries. Furthermore, Kenya did not consistently maintain its supposed boundary claim.

The court asked that both Somalia and Kenya accept the ruling and each other’s sovereignty.

Somalia initiated legal proceedings against Kenya at the international court in 2014 after it failed to solve the dispute after several meetings.

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