Somalia: UN, AU Welcomes Kenya-Somalia Rapprochement

Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta (right) welcomes his Somalia counterpart Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed at State House in March 2017.

The UN and other Somalia's partners on Saturday said the recent decision by Kenya and Somalia to normalise their relations will help the region to concentrate on security challenges in the Horn of Africa.

In a statement, the partners said the pronouncements by Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta and his Somali counterpart Mohamed Abdullahi Farmaajo, to resume normalcy will benefit the people.

"Somalia's international partners welcome the measures agreed at a meeting between the President of Somalia, Mohamed Abdullahi Farmaajo, and the President of Kenya, Uhuru Kenyatta, held in Nairobi on 14 November, as a significant step in strengthening the good relations between the two countries.

"We note the value of mutually beneficial relations between Somalia and its neighbours which contribute to the prosperity of their peoples, and positively impact security and development in the wider Horn of Africa region, " added the statement signed off by UN, Amisom, Denmark, Egypt, Ethiopia, EU, Finland, France and Germany.

Other partners included Intergovernmental Authority on Development (Igad), Italy, Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), Sweden, Turkey, Uganda, United Nations Assistance Mission in Somalia (UNSOM) and the United States.

On Thursday, Nairobi and Mogadishu agreed to normalise diplomatic relations amid maritime case at the International Court of Justice.

Both sides had engaged in tit-for-tat policies that saw direct flights subjected to stopovers and visas on arrival suspended.

The deal meant Kenya will, in the next one week, lift the restriction that asked aircraft from Somalia to first land in Wajir for security checks, and allow visas on arrival for Somali officials.

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