The top United Nations envoy to Somalia welcomed the announcement of a meeting tomorrow of over 30 countries, known as the International Contact Group (ICG), to examine what concrete measures can be made to support the beleaguered Somali Government.
Participants at tomorrow’s ICG gathering in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, are also expected to discuss the implementation of the 2008 Djibouti Agreement, a peace accord between the Transitional Federal Government (TFG) and Alliance for the Re-liberation of Somalia (ARS) that was meant to pave the way for the cessation of all armed conflict across the Horn of Africa nation.
“We now have a credible partner in the Somali Government to work with in re-establishing the elements of governance and to put in place a foundation for strengthening stability,” said Ahmedou Ould-Abdallah, the UN Special Representative for Somalia as well as the chair of the ICG.
“The international community must seize this opportune moment to provide immediate and urgent support to the Somali Government,” said Ould-Abdallah, stressing that despite “the horrendous attacks by those who try to derail the peace process, the current Government has managed to stay its course for nearly a year.”
The Special Representative said that the Government has until August 2011 to lay ground work for a durable peace and for rebuilding the lives of the people of the war-ravaged, impoverished nation.
“Any assistance provided now is much more valuable than it will be in the future because it will allow this Government to fully engage in establishing stability and to begin rebuilding the nation,” he said.