UNSC Meeting on Somalia

UNSC 6/7

Situation in Somalia

By: Patrick Liu and Lizzie McGowan

 

 

  • Presidential Statement - Russian Federation

 

    1. PRST/2018/13

The Russian Federation, as President of the UNSC for the month of June, read the Presidential Statement on Somalia on behalf of the UNSC.

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The UNSC welcomes the progress made by the Federal government of Somalia on security, economic, and political reforms. The UNSC further lauds the recent elections, and hopes for a resumption of Somalia's federal governmental parliament.

Addressing the concern about fighting in the northern region of Somalia, the UNSC urged the parties involved to an immediate cessation of hostilities and demanded a “pull back” of forces. The UNSC reiterated that political dialogue is the only solution, and encouraged Somalia to engage in a dialogue to resolve the issue. In the face of rising conflict, the UNSC continued to advocate for full, safe, and unhindered humanitarian access.

The UNSC expressed concerns about the external pressures on Somalia’s borders that could risk undermining Somali unity. The UNSC noted the importance of ensuring that these regional conflicts do not impact Somalia, and advocated that the Somali federal government take steps to work against the “destabilizing effects that may spill-over”

Turning to Somalia’s “transition plan”, the UNSC indicated its supported to AMISOM and urged that such important organizations are fully funded throughout the transition. The UNSC mentioned “economic federalism” and the development of a “proper monetary track record” in order to help attract new, external funding for these efforts.

Finally, the UNSC expressed concerns about reports of human rights abuses in Somalia, specifically those related to recruitment of child soldiers and gender/sexual-based violence. The UNSC advocated for the continuation of international support in order to uphold international humanitarian law, and human rights law.

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Lizzie McGowan: Op Ed

The progress in Somalia represents the significant efforts of the international community to bring peace and stability. Conducting successful elections is a sign that serious efforts are being put forth to govern ungoverned territories and change the status of their failed state. If these improvements continue, they will be able to consistently have elections on time with a peaceful transition of power. Hopefully, the successful elections will be lead to government sustainability that will in turn allow them to better collaborate with the international community to solve security and financial problems. Significantly, the Somali government has embraced a region based transition plan. This will allow them to specifically target the varying needs of each region and devise plans to develop infrastructure and enhance security.

It should also be noted that there has been a push to increase women’s participation in the political process. This milestone illustrates that regardless of religious and cultural barriers, it is possible to take progressive steps as it pertains to gender equality. Involving women in the decision making process offers a balanced approach to policy making. As Somalia develops new and more effective governing systems, the inclusion of women’s perspective will be key to having a more egalitarian and democratic society.

While they have made these improvements in holding elections, the threat of Al-Shabab in the northern region is cause for concern, not to the reliance on remittances in their fledgling financial system. If Al-Shabab is not contained, all of the progress made in holding elections and quelling violence will be lost. Since their goal is to take over the country, it more important than ever to support regional security forces to defeat them. Normalizing the financial system is crucial due to 40% of the population relying on remittances from abroad. Without a strong financial system, they will continue to have a weak economy and high unemployment. The aforementioned factors lead to more instability and provide a safe haven for terrorist to raise funds and have a stakeholder economically.

 


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