British, UN leaders to address Somalia humanitarian crisis

Brandon Parsons
May 14, 2017

He said Somalia now hangs in the balance between peril and potential.

LONDON, United Kingdom- Somali Federal government President Mohamed Abdulahi Mohamed Farmajo and British Prime Minister Theresa May have jointly opened the International London conference on Somalia to bring needed support for the new Federal government, Garowe Online reports.

The Somali president, Mohamed Abdullahi "Farmajo" Mohamed, said al-Shabaab could be defeated in two years but urged more countries to forgive Somalia's debt.

The UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said on Thursday as he presented revised humanitarian response plan.

"Losing an American serviceman is a bad thing under any circumstances, but our presence there and the fact that we're prepared to make that sacrifice underscores how serious this is for us", says Shannon, speaking exclusively to Newsweek on the sidelines of a global summit on Somalia in London. The Prime Minister of Ethiopia said that his country supported the partial lifting of the arms embargo against Somalia and reassured the audience that support for Al-shabaab was waning along with its capability to take over territory.

The worldwide community is also looking for commitment to deliver a one person, one vote democracy by 2020-21.

Talks on security will focus on rebuilding the Somali National Army and how to counter terrorism while protecting human rights.

Mohamed warned that unless the Somali army had access to more sophisticated arms, the conflict would continue for a further decade.

"Security, economic development, political stability, and cooperation with worldwide community, these are the main focus of the conference", he said. Communities have been subject to Al-Shabaab handouts, a strategy by the group to win over the hearts and minds of the Somalia people, Critical Threats has warned. "He understands that the reason that hasn't happened yet is because Somalia still doesn't have in place the internal control mechanism, the storage, repository and tracking mechanisms necessary to ensure that weapons stay where they are supposed to stay", says Shannon in an exclusive meeting with Newsweek on the sidelines of the London conference.

Now wholly reliant on aid to feed herself and her eight children, she said: "Without the food, Allah knows what we will eat and where the food comes from".

The U.S. military has acknowledged the problem. "I can assure you that Somalia will never turn back".

Guterres added that over six million people in Somalia need humanitarian aid and 275,000 children could die of hunger.

He said: "Globally, I think we are (mobilising help) sooner than we did before, and it's really now a race against time to see if the global community has actually done enough and is doing enough to avert the kind of deaths that we saw in 2011".

Other reports by AllAboutTopnews

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