IGAD Leaders Pledge More Support for Somalia

The IGAD Heads of State have pledged more support for the restoration of peace in Somalia that has been in turmoil for over two decades.

Leaders including Presidents Museveni of Uganda, here Uhuru Kenyatta of Kenya, Ethiopian Prime Minister, Haillemariam Dessalgn converged in Nairobi over weekend together with the newly elected Somali President Mohamed Abduahi Mohamed to brainstorm on the refugee crisis from the restive Horn of African nation.

In a statement issued by the Secretariat on Sunday, the IGAD leaders are deeply concerned that more than two million Somalis have been displaced with over a million internally displaced persons (IDPs), while nearly 900,000 are refugees in the region and Yemen, many of whom are women and children.

They jointly condemned violence in Somalia that has resulted into one of the world’s most protracted displacement crises.

“We condemn in the strongest terms all forms of sectarianism, tribalism, terrorism and extremism which constitute the root causes of refugee movements,” part of the statement read.

The leaders also recognized the efforts of the United Nations High Commission for Refugees in assisting the people fleeing from Somalia and host nations and the appointment of the Special Envoy.

“We appreciate the appointment of Ambassador Mohamed Affey as the UNHCR Special Envoy for the Somali Refugee Situation and appreciating the mandate and responsibilities of UNHCR to provide protection and seek durable solutions for refugees, and its contribution to collective efforts to support returnees and internally displaced persons.”

The Heads of State promised more on security and development of Somalia.


“We further support the strengthening of security and stability, by enhancing the discharge of the mandate of the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) and reinforce its capacity and that of the National Security Forces of Somalia to enable unimpeded humanitarian access and the delivery of assistance to the civilian population.”

Uganda, Kenya and Burundi have troops in Somalia to combat the radical Islamic militants, the Al-Shabaab.

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