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SC: Somalia

Statement by Permanent Representative Mona Juul on the situation in Somalia, 22 February 2021.

Thank you to the briefers. Special thanks to SRSG Swan and SRCC Madeira for their joint efforts to facilitate solutions to the current political and electoral crisis.

Speaking with one voice sends a strong message of a multilateral system committed and ready to support Somalia’s efforts moving forward. 

The Federal Government, Federal Member States and other stakeholders should work together and redouble their efforts to reach a consensual solution without delay. This crisis has already consumed too much political energy that could have been put to better use, advancing social changes, economic development and security.

We welcome statements made over the weekend by the AU, IGAD and the UN and encourage even more assertive and coordinated efforts by these actors, including through active facilitation of talks.

President,

With reference to the current developments as highlighted in the report let me highlight four key priorities:

First, The Somali Women Charter provides a solid Somali-led and -owned foundation towards more broad-based and inclusive processes in all reform areas. We strongly believe that supporting the inclusion and empowerment of Somali women should be given higher priority and visibility by the Somali government as well as in the mandate and work of AMISOM and the UN. It is positive that the Electoral Law that was passed in February 2020 stipulates a 30 % quota for women in the Federal Parliament.

However, there is a need for real political will to ensure such a quota is implementable, and for the Somali political leadership to see women’s increased political participation as beneficial to the further development and state-building of the country.

Second, the updated Somali Transition Plan is of key importance to the process towards Somalia taking responsibility for its own security.

A comprehensive approach to security includes effective and coordinated stabilization efforts as well as addressing the root causes through the National Reconciliation Process. We would like to underscore the importance of a close cooperation and partnership between the AU and UN, in order to facilitate a coherent and coordinated international support to the implementation of the STP. 

A recent study of the AMISOM, Somali Army and civilian partners intervention in Lower Shabelle highlighted improved cooperation among partners as one of the successes factors.

Third, we support Somalia’s efforts to ensure that revisions of the Provisional Federal Constitution and other legislation are in line with Somalia’s international human rights obligations. We strongly urge the Federal Government of Somalia (FGS) to ensure that any bill addressing current gaps in the legal framework on sexual violence is in line with regional and international obligations and call for the immediate reintroduction of the 2018 sexual offences bill.

We also call on the FGS to enact the widely consulted version of the Child Rights Bill, ratify the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the Involvement of Children in Armed Conflict and the African Charter on the Rights and Welfare of the Child;

Fourth, Somalia is highly susceptible to the effects of climate change and extreme weather. It impacts livelihoods, increases displacement, and can fuel tensions and disrupt ongoing conflict resolution initiatives. In addressing the recurrent humanitarian crises in Somalia, we need to strengthen our partnership with the Somali Government in addressing these crises and climate-related security risks through advancing the Humanitarian-Development-Peace Nexus.

President,

Going forward the country will depend on courageous women and men who seek solutions through dialogue and compromise.

Norway remains a committed partner with the Somali people and are ready to continue our support to Somali-led and Somali-owned reforms to secure peace, inclusive democracy, and development to the people of Somalia.