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Somalia re-assures UN its readiness to hold elections

MOGADISHU (SD) – Somalia re-affirmed its readiness to hold inclusive elections in the country despite the collapse of the talks between leaders of the federal government and regional states two days ago.

In a letter signed by Mohamed Abdirizak, Somalia’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, which was a response to comments made by Linda Thomas-Greenfield, Representative of the United States to the United Nations and Security Council President for the month of March, Somalia stated that it would to resolve the current political stalemate on the electoral process.

‘The federal government of Somalia considers the 17th September agreement as the base the electoral process and stands by the recommendations of the 16th February Baidoa Technical Committee without pre-conditions,” the letter reads in part. “In response to the concerns regarding electoral security, we would like to hereby affirm that the National Election Security Task led by the prime minister will be the mechanism through which all election-related security issues will be addressed.”

The horn of Africa nation has warned that it would not accept internal interference, urging the security council to support the sovereignty of the nation.

“National elections in Somalia, as in any other sovereign nation, remain a national issue deliberated and decided upon by the national institutions of the country as stipulated in Law No.30 passed by the Parliament. Therefore, we appreciate the UNSC’s unwavering support for Somalia’s sovereignty, territorial integrity, unity, and political independence of Somalia,” the ministry said. “The Federal Government of Somalia regards any interference in the process of the National Elections by external actors as direct interference into our internal affairs in breach of UN Securit Council Resolutions, International Conventions and laws.”

The letter by Somalia comes a day after international community urged Somalia’s federal government and regional leaders to continue consultative talks on the electoral process.

Somalia’s partners said they were alarmed by public statements made by some officials suggesting that the closed-door, consultative, ice-breaking meeting of Federal Government and Federal Member State leaders is not making progress.

“We stress that these talks are central to ensuring implementation of the 17 September electoral model for credible elections, without which the progress of recent years in Somalia’s stability, economic development and institutional reforms will be at risk,” the international community said in a statement.

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