Somalia: Turkey Voices Concern Over Election Unrest in Somalia

Turkey on Sunday expressed concern over unrest in Somalia as tension rises due to delayed elections in the country.

"We are concerned about the recent negative developments arising from the dispute over the election process in Somalia," the Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

"It is important that all parties act with common sense by avoiding steps that may lead to violence, and that the Federal Government and Federal Member States' Leaders come together and try to resolve disputes with an inclusive and constructive dialogue on the basis of the agreement reached on 17 September 2020," the statement added.

"We believe that the friendly and brotherly people of Somalia have the will and political maturity to determine their own future," the ministry said.

"In this context, we hope that a consensus will be reached on the election process, on the basis of mutual understanding without further delay," it added.

On Saturday, Somalia's opposition vowed to push on with protests against the delay of the country's elections, a day after violence flared up in the capital Mogadishu.

At least four people, including soldiers, were killed and three more wounded in a gunfight between military personnel and opposition members near the presidential palace on Friday.

Somalia's opposition parties have launched protests against the government's decision to defer elections, calling on President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed to step down as his constitutional mandate expired on Feb. 8.

In a bid to quell the demonstrations, the government has barred all public gatherings in the country, citing coronavirus risks.

It said the president will remain in office until the election is held, as approved in a resolution passed by the Somali parliament.

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