12 December 2012

Somalia President's Visit to Kenya Postponed Again

Mogadishu — Somali President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud's planned visit to neighboring Kenya has been postponed again, Garowe Online reports.

Last week in Mogadishu, President Hassan told reporters that he would visit Kenya upon returning from an official visit to Turkey. However, President Hassan returned to Mogadishu instead, indicating that his planned visit to Kenya was postponed.

On Wednesday, sources at Mogadishu's Aden Adde International Airport told GO that President Hassan and a delegation arrived at the airport on a planned to visit Kenya. The source's information could not be independently verified.

However, that visit was postponed again today and President Hassan told the BBC Somali Service during a Wednesday interview that he plans to travel to Kenya soon.

"The Somali government has good relations with Kenya. I plan to visit Kenya in the coming weeks," President Hassan said.

Answering a question about Jubaland state formation, President Hassan said: "Jubaland is part of Somalia and comes under the Somali government, which is a sovereign nation. Kenya and IGAD [regional bloc] assist the Somali government in administration building process for Jubaland and other regions."

Dec. 12 marks the day when Kenya got its independence from Great Britain in 1963.

Since his election in September, President Hassan has had tense relations with the Kenyan government. Kenyan-AMISOM forces aided Somali local forces in seizing Kismayo port city from Al Shabaab militant group three months ago.

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