New York, January 24, 2018 - Kazakhstan chaired a Security Council briefing on the situation in Somalia.
Michael Keating, Special Representative of the Secretary-General to Somalia, and Francisco Madeira, Special Representative of the African Union Commission, were the keynote speakers.
The speakers informed about the progress made by the new federal authorities of Somalia with the assistance of the international community. Thus, despite the existing difficulties, a national agenda was developed that provides for the financial reform, creation of new jobs, involvement of various population groups in the political process, resolution of the conflict and security sector reform. Notable progress was achieved in matters of political transformation and enhancing interaction between the central government (the Government of Somalia) and the local authorities, as well as the improvement of the complex humanitarian situation.
The speakers emphasized that the terrorist group Al-Shabaab continues to pose a threat to stability and security in the country, questioning peacebuilding and strengthening of statehood in the country. It was noted that Somalis still face a number of complex political and humanitarian problems, as well as serious security challenges. In this regard, the speakers highlighted the positive role of the African Union Mission, the national security forces and international partners in Somalia, which contribute to the country's progress.
The Special Representatives also informed the Council that last year Somalia managed to prevent famine. However, the humanitarian situation is deteriorating due to the drought.
In their statements made after the briefing, the UN Security Council members reaffirmed the importance of accelerating the implementation of the national security architecture and the gradual transition of responsibility from the African Union Mission in Somalia to the national security forces of the country.
Kairat Umarov, Permanent Representative of Kazakhstan, together with the Council members, welcomed Somalia's commitment to security policy, economic and political reforms, urging the Somali government to ensure high-level dialogue with federal member states to make progress on key issues including the constitutional review, elections, fiscal federalism, and power and resource sharing.
Concern was also expressed about the continued vulnerability of millions of people, notably children and the internally displaced, to the ongoing risk of famine in Somalia, and the need for generous support to the Humanitarian Response Plan was recognized.