News / Africa

AU Urges Unity Among Somali Leaders

Multimedia

Audio
  • Ramtane Lamamra, African Union's commissioner for Peace and Security spoke with Clottey

Peter Clottey

A top official of the African Union is calling for unity among Somali leaders to resolve the country’s problems in the face of the ongoing power struggle between President Sheikh Sharif Sheikh Ahmed and Prime Minister Omar Abdirashid Sharmarke.

Somali President Sheikh Sharif Sheikh Ahmed
Somali President Sheikh Sharif Sheikh Ahmed

Ramtane Lamamra, the continental body’s commissioner for Peace and Security, told VOA the country’s leaders should not allow the ongoing confusion to undermine the international community’s confidence in Somalia.

“It is important, of course, that they (leaders) could send a message of unity to the rest of the world, especially at a time when the international community is getting ready to have this Istanbul conference on the solidarity and reconstruction of Somalia. It’s important that this conference is not disturbed by the news that we are getting out of Somalia,” he said.

Some observers say the political stalemate casts a shadow over the upcoming international conference on Somalia scheduled to be held in Turkey this weekend.

This comes after Prime Minister Sharmarke said Tuesday that he will be staying in power despite President Ahmed’s earlier announcement that he would soon be naming a new government.

Mr. Sharmarke was quoted as saying, “I am legally the prime minister of Somalia and the statement by President Sheikh Sharif Sheikh Ahmed that called for the formation of a new government was regrettable.”

Commissioner Lamamra urged the leaders to resolve their differences.

“We really plead with the parties in Somalia to get their act together and to find ways to build and consolidate political consensus that will help them to move and to complete transitional period in the safest way for the country at a time when challenges are still out there, and they need to be faced with the utmost unity of purpose,” Lamamra said.

President Ahmed’s government has been battling almost daily with insurgents, including al-Shabab described by Washington as a terrorist organization with strong links to al-Qaida.

Analysts say the escalating power struggle between the two leaders is empowering the hard-line Islamic insurgents who have vowed to overthrow the internationally-backed government.

Commissioner Lamamra said the insurgents take advantage of any situation.

“The insurgents certainly will take advantage of every weakness on the part of the government and on the part of the international community to try to score goals if not to try to take control of political power in the country,” Lamamra said.

He also urged the international community to deliver on its logistical and financial promises to help Somalia’s rebuilding efforts.

You May Like

UN Watchdog Urges Israel to Probe Possible Gaza War Crimes

More than 2,100 Palestinians, most of them civilians, were killed in a 51-day war in Gaza, along with 67 Israeli soldiers and six civilians in Israel More

New Kenyan 'Thin SIMs' Poised to Transform African Mobile Money

Equity's new technology is approved in African nation for one-year trial, though industry leader Safaricom says thin SIMs could lead to data theft and fraud More

Solar's Future Looks Brighter

New technology and dropping prices are contributing to a surge in solar power More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Talks to Resume on Winter Gas for Ukrainei
X
Al Pessin
October 25, 2014 4:21 PM
Ukrainian and Russian officials will meet again next week in an effort to settle their dispute over natural gas supplies that threatens to leave Ukraine short of heating fuel for the coming winter. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London the dispute is complex, and has both economic and geopolitical dimensions.
Video

Video Talks to Resume on Winter Gas for Ukraine

Ukrainian and Russian officials will meet again next week in an effort to settle their dispute over natural gas supplies that threatens to leave Ukraine short of heating fuel for the coming winter. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London the dispute is complex, and has both economic and geopolitical dimensions.
Video

Video Smugglers Offer Cheap Passage From Turkey to Syria

Smugglers in Turkey offer a relatively cheap passage across the border into Syria. Ankara has stepped up efforts to stem the flow of foreign fighters who want to join Islamic State militants fighting for control of the Syrian border city of Kobani. But porous borders and border guards who can be bribed make illegal border crossings quite easy. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video China Political Meeting Seeks to Improve Rule of Law

China’s communist leaders will host a top level political meeting this week, called the Fourth Plenum, and for the first time in the party’s history, rule of law will be a key item on the agenda. Analysts and Chinese media reports say the meetings could see the approval of long-awaited measures aimed at giving courts more independence and include steps to enhance an already aggressive and high-reaching anti-corruption drive. VOA’s Bill Ide has more from Beijing.
Video

Video After Decades of Pressure, Luxembourg Drops Bank Secrecy Rules

European Union finance ministers have reached a breakthrough agreement that will make it more difficult for tax cheats to hide their money. The new legislation, which had been blocked for years by countries with a reputation as tax havens, was approved last week after Luxembourg and Austria agreed to lift their vetoes. But as Mil Arcega reports, it doesn’t mean tax cheats have run out of places to keep their money hidden.
Video

Video Kobani Refugees Welcome, Turkey Criticizes, US Airdrop

Residents of Kobani in northern Syria have welcomed the airdrop of weapons, ammunition and medicine to Kurdish militia who are resisting the seizure of their city by Islamic State militants. The Turkish government, however, has criticized the operation. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from southeastern Turkey, across the border from Kobani.
Video

Video US ‘Death Cafes’ Put Focus on the Finale

In contemporary America, death usually is a topic to be avoided. But the growing “death café” movement encourages people to discuss their fears and desires about their final moments. VOA’s Jerome Socolovsky reports.
Video

Video Ebola Orphanage Opens in Sierra Leone

Sierra Leone's first Ebola orphanage has opened in the Kailahun district. Hundreds of children orphaned since the beginning of the Ebola outbreak face stigma and rejection with nobody to care for them. Adam Bailes reports for VOA about a new interim care center that's aimed at helping the growing number of children affected by Ebola.

All About America

AppleAndroid