17 January 2013

Somalia: U.S. 'To Recognize' Somalia Federal Government

Photo: Stuart Price/UN Photo
A Somali girl runs in front of an African Union armed personnel carrier in Mogadishu. In past months, residents of Mogadishu have enjoyed relative peace in their city after decades of instability.

Mogadishu — The U.S. federal government is set to recognize the new government of the Federal Republic of Somalia, marking the first time a U.S. administration has recognized a national government in Somalia since the ear ly 1990s, Garowe Online reports.

Somali President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud leading a federal government delegation including Foreign Minister Fosia Yusuf Haji Aden and Information Minister Abdullahi Ilmoge has been in Washington, D.C., this week for meetings with officials from the U.S. State Department and U.S. Congress.

U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for African Affairs Johnnie Carson told reporters in Washington, D.C., that the U.S. government would formally recognize the new government of Somalia after over 20 years without diplomatic ties between the two countries.

"We are a long way from where we were on Oct. 3, 1993, when Black Hawk Down occurred in Mogadishu, " Carson said, according to a report by Reuters news wire.

Carson indicated that U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton would meet President Hassan in Washington and the U.S. would formally recognize the new Somali federal government. President Hassan was elected in Mogadishu September 2012 by the Somali Federal Parliament in a U .N.-facilitated process that included the ad option of a new Provisional Federal Constitution for Somalia.

President Hassan told a VOA Somali Service interview on Thursday that he has met U.S. State Department officials, federal legislators, USAID officials, and World Bank President Jim Yong Kim during meetings in Washington.

"We have discussed many issues with U.S. officials, including a briefing on security conditions, the humanitarian situation, and discussions on previous agreements between Somalia and the U.S., as well as the fate of U.S. government assets in Somalia and likewise Somali government assets in the U.S., " President Hassan said during the interview.

He noted that he was happy to visit the U.S. and eagerly welcomes U.S. diplomatic recognition of the Somali federal government, which paves the way for increased projects by USAID, World Bank, and International Monetary Fund.

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