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Somali Parliament Endorses New Cabinet

  • VOA News

FILE - Somalia’s parliament has endorsed the new cabinet of Prime Minister Omar Abdirashid Ali Sharmarke, right. He’s shown addressing delegates after being nominated for his post by President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud, left, in Mogadishu, Dec. 17, 2014.

FILE - Somalia’s parliament has endorsed the new cabinet of Prime Minister Omar Abdirashid Ali Sharmarke, right. He’s shown addressing delegates after being nominated for his post by President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud, left, in Mogadishu, Dec. 17, 2014.

The Somali parliament approved a new cabinet on Monday, just hours after gunmen shot and killed one of its members.

Somalia's parliament has approved a new cabinet.

Somalia's parliament has approved a new cabinet.

Abdullahi Qayad Barre was gunned down in the Hamar Jajab district of the capital, Mogadishu. Fellow lawmaker Mohamed Ali Hagaa said Barre was on his way to parliament when he was shot dead in his car at a busy intersection.

The attackers escaped the scene, and the al-Qaida-linked militant group al-Shabab claimed responsibility for the shooting.

Despite the killing, parliament met and endorsed the cabinet of Prime Minister Omar Abdirashid Sharmarke.

The new cabinet consists of 66 members, most of whom are members of parliament. This was the prime minister's second lineup of cabinet members, after lawmakers objected to his first list of candidates.

International donors have warned that chronic infighting among Somali politicians is hurting efforts to stabilize the war-ravaged country.

Barre is the first lawmaker to be killed in Somalia this year. Five were killed last year. Al-Shabab militants have claimed responsibility for all the attacks.

Al-Shabab once controlled much of southern and central Somalia and imposed a harsh form of Islamic law that banned music and led to public amputations for accused thieves.

Government and African Union troops have recaptured most of the territory, but the militants were still able to kill the parliament members last year and launch two major assaults on the presidential palace. On December 25, they attacked a base of African Union peacekeepers that support the government.

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