A delegation led by Prime Minister of Somalia, Abdiweli Sheikh Ahmed arrived in Addis Ababa on Friday (February 15) for an official visit to Ethiopia at the invitation of Prime Minister Hailemariam. Prime Minister Abdiweli was heading a delegation which included the Ministers of Foreign Affairs and of Information.
Discussions focused on ways to strengthen bilateral relations between the two countries. Prime Minister Hailemariam reaffirmed Ethiopia's unwavering commitment to continue to support efforts to bring lasting peace and stability to Somalia as it had been doing for the past two decades. He emphasized Ethiopia's readiness to support the efforts of building up the Somali defense forces through training and experience-sharing.
He also said the two countries needed to step up efforts to cooperate in trade and investment. Prime Minister Hailemariam said the wrong and failed policies of past governments had made them see each other as enemies for a long time, but, he stressed, their growing relationship today was opening a new chapter in the history of their bilateral relations. Ethiopia, he said, can only benefit from a stable Somalia and the same applies to Somalia.
Prime Minister Abdiweli praised Ethiopia's role in bringing peace and stability in Somalia and emphasize the importance of Ethiopia's support for the removal of the threat of Al-Shabaab and for the creation of lasting peace for Somalia. Hailing Ethiopia's decision to join AMISOM, Prime Minster Abdiweli praised its contributions to the Mission. He said the recent bomb attacks committed by Al-Shabaab showed its desperation as it was being driven out by people in rural areas.
After the prime ministerial talks, a Memorandum of Understanding was signed to promote cooperation and partnership in building the capacity of the police force and on information. Dr. Shiferaw Teklemariam, Ethiopian Minister of Federal Affairs and Abdurrahman Duale Beileh, Somalia's Minister of Foreign Affairs, signed a cooperative agreement on building up the capacity of the police force; and Ethiopia's Minister of Government Communication Affairs, Redwan Hussein and Somalia's Minister of Information, Mustaf Sheikh Ali Dhuhulow, signed a cooperative agreement to cover the field of information. An agreement was also signed between Minsiter of Transport ,Workneh Gebeyehu and his counterpart on aviation matters.