15 February 2013

Somalia: Security Council Reviews United Nations Presence in Somalia

The UN Security Council announced on Thursday (February 14th) that it is planning to establish a revised UN presence in Somalia to provide enhanced peace building and humanitarian support.

"This period of transformation, with its opportunities and challenges, requires a step change in the United Nations' support to peace building in Somalia," Assistant Secretary-General for Political Affairs Tayé-Brook Zerihoun told the council, according to the UN News Centre.

The new mission would include new offices and assistance on security, state-building, elections, human rights, the rule of law and co-ordination of international assistance, Zerihoun said.

Somali Foreign Affairs Minister Fowsiyo Yusuf Hajji Aadan addressed the council, supporting an "integrated mission" in Mogadishu to address the Somalis displaced by fighting.

She also requested the lifting of the 20-year arms embargo to allow Somali armed forces to fight al-Shabaab. "Getting rid of the remnants of al-Shabaab is a top priority for us," Aadan said.

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