Somalia: Prime Minister Calls for Immediate Ceasefire in Lower Shabelle
The Prime Minister of Somalia His Excellency Abdiweli Sheikh Ahmed today issued an urgent message to the clan militia fighting in lower Shabelle region and called on them to immediately cease hostilities. He also announced that his government will send a ministerial level delegation to the region to bring the conflict to an end.
The Cabinet Committees on Security and Politics met to analyse the situation and issued the following points:
1. All parties involved in the conflict should commence an immediate ceasefire as of today's date of 09/06/2014 and end the conflict.
2. All the armed militia should be removed immediately from the conflict zone and turned over to the government's forces.
3. The Somali Joint Security Forces will assume immediate responsibility for the security of Marka and the entire region of Lower Shabelle.
4. To ensure implementation of these urgent priorities, the Minister of Interior Affairs and the Minister of Defence, who is also the current Acting Minister of National Security, will lead a high-level delegation that will visit Marka.
5. We call upon the senior command of AMISOM to take a significant role in supporting an immediate ceasefire and the stabilization of Lower Shabelle.
Addressing the issue, the Prime Minister said:
"I am calling on the fighting groups in Lower Shabelle to immediately ceasefire. This country does not need any more bloodshed. The people who are dying are all brothers and sisters. There is no conflict that cannot be solved through dialogue.
"My government is committed to fostering dialogue and reconciliation among the people of this country. In this spirit, we are sending to Marka a high-level delegation led by the Minister of Interior Affairs and the Minister of Defence, who is also the current Acting Minister of National Security. This delegation will focus on resolving the conflict and re-establishing open dialogue among the parties involved in the conflict.
"To ensure immediate ceasefire in Marka and to ensure the stabilization of Lower Shabelle region, the Somali National Army, with support from AMISOM forces, will do all in its power to bring the conflict to an end. We are committed to the wellbeing of our communities and will continue to work towards their protection."