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Chairperson of the African Union Commission receives the President of Somalia, His Excellency Mohammed Abdullahi Mohamed

The Chairperson of the African Union Commission (AUC), His Excellency, Moussa Faki Mahamat welcomed the President of the Federal Republic of Somalia, His Excellency, Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed, to the African Union Commission Headquarters, in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. This meeting was preceded by an earlier visit to Mogadishu by His Excellency, Moussa Faki Mahamat on 18 March 2017, following his inauguration as the Chairperson of the AUC. The official visit by the President of Somalia presented an opportunity to renew the strong partnership that has been forged between the African Union and the Federal Government of Somalia in the political, security and humanitarian areas, and in the overall promotion of peace, stability and reconciliation in Somalia.

The Commission welcomed the political reconciliation process initiated by the Federal Government of Somalia with the federal member states and expressed its full support to the Government's efforts to consolidate agreements on resource allocation, corruption and the development of robust and inclusive national security institutions. The Commission further expressed support to and the need for the completion of the constitutional review process and, the implementation of local reconciliation processes including those associated with border disputes between communities.

The Federal Government of Somalia and the Commission expressed concern that Al Shaabab remained a serious threat to the country and the region. In this respect, they underscored the importance of international support to Somalia Security forces and the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) in regaining territorial control of Al Shaabab held areas especially in the Jubba Valley Corridor and the North East Coastline. The Commission congratulated the Federal Government of Somalia on the recent signing of the Somali National Security Architecture, which offers a sound foundation for the establishment of capable national security institutions.

The Commission further stressed the need for continuous political dialogue, and the central role of the African Union, working with international partners, in the effective implementation of the Architecture. As part of these efforts, the Federal Government of Somalia and the Commission also called for the lifting of the United Nations Security Council authorized arms embargo taking into account relevant accountability and compliance measures. This is consistent with calls made by the AU Peace and Security Council and is an important step for building viable national security institutions in Somalia, which will in turn accelerate AMISOM's exit strategy.

The Commission further expressed its determination to mobilise the continent and the international community to provide additional assistance to address the dire humanitarian situation in Somalia. The Commission expressed its commitment to work with other strategic partners in ensuring a holistic response to the humanitarian crisis.

The Government of Somalia expressed its deep appreciation to the African Union and the Troop and Police Contributing Countries for the sacrifices made over the last decade in the restoration of peace, security and stability in Somalia. President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed further expressed his full support to AMISOM in its role in the political process and the operations against Al Shaabab. In this respect, both the Federal Government of Somalia and the Commission agreed to finalise and endorse the revised Status of Mission Agreement for AMISOM by July 2017.

Finally, the Federal Government of Somalia and the Commission agreed to reinforce their partnership in pursuit of sustainable peace and security in Somalia by establishing a Joint African Union-Somalia Taskforce to follow up and report on the implementation of agreed outcomes of the meeting. It was also agreed that the upcoming London conference offers a platform to ensure that there is a clear recognition and common understanding of the centrality of the African Union-Somalia partnership in the coordinated support by international partners to the Somali Security sector and the broader peace and stabilization efforts in Somalia.

Distributed by APO on behalf of African Union Peace and Security Department.
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