We thank the briefers for their valuable insights, especially at this critical time. Norway welcomes the conclusion of the electoral process, and congratulates President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud on his election. And we thank UNSOM for assisting the elections process, and for their cooperation on election financing.
We are encouraged that President Hassan Sheikh has clearly outlined: national reconciliation, security, economic recovery, and inclusive political stability as critical priorities ahead. We are particularly pleased that a constructive dialogue between the President and the IMF on debt relief and economic reforms has started, and already yielded results. Political stability is fundamental to economic recovery and development for the Somali people. Revitalising the constitutional reform process deserves the government’s full attention and our support.
This is a crucial step towards reaching consensus on federalism, national reconciliation, and preparing for democratic elections in 2026. Norway looks forward to the swift formation of a new inclusive federal government. One that can advance these critical national priorities.
As Somalia aims to take more responsibility for its own security and development over the coming years, the international community will continue to support, but commitment and effective Somali leadership will be key.
We are disappointed by the overall set-back in the representation of women in Parliament, but indeed congratulate Sadia Yasin Haji on being the first woman to hold the office of first deputy speaker. It is important to provide relevant and sufficient support and security to all newly elected women MPs, so they can play their role fully.
We also remain deeply concerned by the overall security situation, particularly the persistent attacks by Al Shabaab. Effective implementation of the Somali Transition Plan is key to restoring security and stability and protecting civilians. We welcome the newly adopted mandate of the AU Transition Mission in Somalia, which lays the foundation for a new, and more effective military response by Somali Security Forces, and ATMIS to Al Shabaab. However, this should be supplemented by a renewed and strengthened approach to national reconciliation, stabilisation, and a possible dialogue track.
We also must not forget the persistent undercurrent: Somalia is on the brink of famine. There are more than 700 000 new IDPs. Communities have faced multiple shocks – from climate-induced recurring droughts and flooding, to conflict, locusts, COVID-19 and rising prices of food and fuel, all resulting in grave consequences for the civilian population. For women and children in particular the situation is devastating. Children’s access to education is significantly hampered- the right to education must be upheld. Protection against conflict related sexual violence must remain a key priority for this Council.
While all parties to the conflict must allow and facilitate full, safe, and unhindered humanitarian access. We also need to find more sustainable solutions to these recurring emergencies. Humanitarian and development stakeholders must ensure their efforts are complimentary, with a focus right now on scaling up life-saving assistance.
In closing, Norway again welcomes the conclusion of the electoral process and looks forward to a reinvigorated and constructive cooperation between Somalia and the Security Council to advance critical Somali priorities, reforms, and the protection of civilians.