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UN Chief Concerned About Somali Transition Delays

  • VOA News

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon speaks during a visit to the Korean Committee for UNICEF in Seoul, South Korea, Aug. 14, 2012.

U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon speaks during a visit to the Korean Committee for UNICEF in Seoul, South Korea, Aug. 14, 2012.

United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon says he is "seriously concerned" about delays in selecting Somalia's new parliament, and says political leaders need to work in the best interest of the Somali people.

Ban said in a statement that he is encouraged by the progress Somalia has made in its transition. But he says that intimidation and violence should not be allowed to threaten the process.

A U.N. mandate for the existing transitional government in Somalia expires August 20. Leaders have already adopted a new provisional constitution, but must still select the parliament members and elect a new president.

Ban says those tasks must be done impartially and free from intimidation and corruption.

Somalia has been without a stable central government since 1991.

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