AU to lobby for additional support to help stabilize Somalia

Source: Xinhua| 2018-12-14 00:31:46|Editor: Mu Xuequan
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NAIROBI, Dec. 13 (Xinhua) -- The African Union member states said Thursday they will lobby the UN Security Council for support to enable the mission in Somalia (AMISOM) stabilize the Horn of Africa nation.

Monica Juma, Kenya's cabinet secretary in the Ministry for Foreign Affairs told a continental peace forum in Nairobi that AMISOM currently lacks the force multiplier and enablers to boost land troops in Somalia in their fight against the al-Shabab terror group.

"We will continue to lobby for support for AMISOM as the AU in order to improve our air cover and marine capabilities so as to stabilize Somalia," Juma said during the opening ceremony of the forum.

The two-day event was organized jointly by Kenya, the UN Institute for Training and Research and the AU.

The annual event is aimed at promoting the strategic engagement between the three African members on the UN Security Council and has over the years become an effective forum for outgoing, incoming and continuing African members of the Security Council to share experiences, and strategize on how to most effectively strengthen Africa's voice on the council.

Africa is currently represented by Cote d'Ivoire, Equatorial Guinea and Ethiopia at the UN Security Council.

Juma said AMISOM does have adequate resources that are predictable as well as adequate equipment that can support the mission to deal with the threats of terrorism.

She noted that this is largely because AMISOM has to seek authorization and coherence from the UN Security Council in order to get additional resources.

"Currently there is a challenge of achieving a coherent and common understanding of the needs of AMISOM troops on the ground," she said.

Hannah Tetteh, director general of the United Nations Office at Nairobi said that as a result of several years of hard work, the effectiveness, unity and coordination of the African members of the UN Security Council has improved tremendously.

"Africa's voice in the Security Council is now loud and clear, and its views on all issues concerning the continent are taken seriously," Tetteh said.

She added that with over 60 percent of issues on the security council agenda concerning Africa, it is imperative that Africa's representatives on the security council are effective, united and well-coordinated with the AU, in particular the peace and security council, as well as with the regional economic communities and regional mechanisms.