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SOMALIA’S PRESIDENT STRESSED NEED FOR CONTINUED SUPPORT FROM ETHIOPIA

ADDIS ABABA, -- President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud of Somalia has stressed the need for a continued support from Ethiopia to enable his country to conduct peaceful elections in his country.

President Mohamud made the call during talks with Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn here Thursday,

During their meeting held at the Prime Minister's Office, the Somali President briefed Hailemariam on the current situation in Somalia and on issues related to the election, stressing the need for continued support from Ethiopia.

Stating the criticality of Ethiopia's continued support for the elections, the President added: Though we are always grateful to the African Union Mission (in Somalia, or UNMISS) in general and in particular the role that Ethiopia has been playing in this mission, we still need Ethiopia's support to ascertain peaceful elections in Somalia.

For the first time in 47 years, Somalia is engaged in a national election which has so far been conducted peacefully with no serious incident reported, according to the President. So far about half of the parliamentary election has been conducted but the presidential election scheduled for Nov 30 has been postponed to an unspecified date.

Expressing optimism that the election will be concluded in a peaceful manner, he noted that the postponement of the election was meant to address some technical and logistical issues but there is no political issue related to the rescheduling.

Hailemariam said Ethiopia would continue to exert maximum efforts to create stable conditions during the election, with further promises to provide the necessary support.

As it is evident, we have been working jointly to pacify Somalia but the country is now in a critical period of holding peaceful elections, Hailemariam added.

He emphasized that conditions should be facilitated for the people to elect their leader based on their own free will. The talks between the two leaders were reported to be fruitful as they also pledged to maintain partnerships with the new government.

Somalia will have a new parliament in the next few days with the postponed election expected to be completed in the middle of December.

Source: Nam News Network