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Somali Leaders Need to Resume Dialogue, Annan Says

Somali Leaders Need to Resume Dialogue, Annan Says

New York, Oct 20 2005 6:00PM

Friction between leaders in Somalia is preventing the country's federal institutions from functioning effectively and if divisions intensify these fragile structures could be undermined, Secretary-General Kofi Annan warns in a new report to the Security Council.

Friction between leaders in Somalia is preventing the country's federal institutions from functioning effectively and if divisions intensify these fragile structures could be undermined, Secretary-General Kofi Annan warns in a new report to the Security Council.

"I am deeply concerned that the political tensions between the leaders of the transitional federal institutions have given rise to military preparations on their part," he states.

Instead of tackling the more pressing issues of a national security plan, reconciliation and improving the quality of life of the Somali people, the leaders of the federal institutions are assuming rigid positions and refusing dialogue, Mr. Annan says.

Tensions between Jahwar-based President Abdullahi Yusuf Ahmed and Prime Minister Ali Mohammed Gedi on the one hand, and the Speaker of Parliament, Sharif Hassan Sheikh Adan and ministers based in Mogadishu on the other, have been exacerbated during the last few months. There are also persistent reports of increased violations of the arms embargo, according to the report.

Unless the differences within the transitional federal institutions are addressed, the current political impasse could grow into deeper divisions and undermine the very institutions that the people of Somalia so ardently desire, Mr. Annan warns.

The Secretary-General calls on the Somali leaders and the countries in the region, in particular, not to be part of an intensification of political and military tensions and again urges the Somali leaders to enter into a comprehensive ceasefire agreement.

The Transitional National Government, which is Somalia's internationally-recognized Government, was set up in 2004.


ENDS

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