UN-brokered peace deal signed in Somalia

19 August 2008
Ahmedou Ould-Abdallah addressing a Security Council meeting (file photo)

Somalia’s Transitional Federal Government (TFG) and an opposition group have formally agreed to end all armed confrontation between them in a peace deal mediated by the top United Nations envoy to the war-ravaged Horn of Africa nation.

The TFG and the Alliance for the Re-liberation of Somalia, meeting in neighbouring Djibouti, yesterday also decided to cease making inflammatory statements and to take steps to ensure the agreement goes into effect.

The Djibouti Agreement, initialed by the sides in June, was brokered by Ahmedou Ould-Abdallah, the Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Somalia, which, since Muhammad Siad Barre’s regime was toppled in 1991, has not had a functioning national government and has been riven by factional fighting.

The UN Political Office for Somalia (UNPOS), headed by Mr. Ould-Abdallah, said that participants also discussed how to make the agreement a reality.

Yesterday’s signing of the agreement took place during the first meeting of the high-level and joint security committees of the Agreement, and was also attended by representatives from the African Union (AU), the European Union (EU), the League of Arab States and other groups.

In a related development, the Security Council today unanimously voted to extend by six months the mandate of the AU-led mission in Somalia (AMISOM), which has been helping the country achieve national reconciliation and is facilitating the delivery of humanitarian aid.

Under Chapter VII of the UN Charter which allows for enforcement measures, the Council authorized the AU to set up the force to support dialogue and reconciliation by assisting with the free movement, safe passage and protection of all those involved with the process.

In today’s resolution, the 15-member body urged AU Member States to help AMISOM “facilitate the full withdrawal of other foreign forces from Somalia and help create the conditions for lasting peace and stability there.”

The mission is also tasked with providing protection to the Transitional Federal Institutions (TFIs) to help them carry out their functions of government, and security for key infrastructure.

The Council encouraged Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, in concert with the AU Commission Chairperson and donors, to explore how to bolster UN logistical, political and technical support for the AU.

 

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