UAE pledges to support Somalia's state building
ABU DHABI - The United Arab Emirates has agreed to support the federal republic of Somalia which has been struggling with instability for over three decades, following the maiden visit of President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud to the country.
Hassan Sheikh, who was elected last month, is on a two-day visit to the Emiratis, a country which had a strained relationship with Mogadishu throughout the tenure of Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo. The former president was a close ally of Qatar.
On Wednesday, UAE President Mohamed bin Zayed held a meeting with Sheikh Mohamud in which they discussed cooperation between the two nations in various fields, especially in areas of development, with the two sides discussing the ongoing efforts to establish peace in Somalia.
The UAE president emphasized their commitment to supporting the state-building process in the Horn of Africa nation, adding that special focus would be put on construction, development and stability. UAE has been a close partner of the Somali opposition which is now in government.
For his part, the Somali President said he is looking forward to working on developing cooperation between the UAE and Somalia across all fronts and contributing to enhancing stability and security in the region.
Those who attended the meeting include Sheikh Mansour bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Presidential Affairs; H.H. Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan; Sheikh Shakhboot bin Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of State; and Dr Anwar Gargash, Diplomatic Adviser to UAE President.
Others were Ali bin Hammad Al Shamsi, Deputy Secretary-General of the Supreme National Security Council and Mohamed Ahmed Al Othman, UAE Ambassador to Somalia as well as the delegation accompanying the Somali President.
The Emiratis agreed to improve cooperation on security, trade and development according to Villa Somalia. UAE pledged to donate $20M in response to droughts; resume direct flights to Mogadishu, and reopen Sheikh Zayed hospital which was closed down in 2018 after a disagreement with the previous government.