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UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
Tuesday 31 May 2005

SOMALIA: UN special representative meets with president

NAIROBI, 31 May 2005 (IRIN) - François Lonseny Fall, the newly appointed special representative of the UN Secretary-General to Somalia, met with interim President Abdullahi Yusuf Ahmed on Monday and assured him of the UN's commitment to helping consolidate the Somali peace process.

"Ambassador Fall assured President Yusuf of the commitment of the United Nations under his leadership to work strenuously for the consolidation of the achievements of the peace process that was led by IGAD [Inter-Governmental Authority on Development]," said a statement issued by the UN Political Office for Somalia (UNPOS).

IGAD, which includes Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Sudan, Uganda and Somalia, sponsored peace talks between Somalia's various clans and factions that culminated in the establishment of the Somali transitional federal government (TFG) in 2004.

The TFG remains in Nairobi, where it was set up, because security concerns and lack of resources have prevented members of the administration from moving to Mogadishu, the Somali capital.

During Monday's meeting with Fall, the president expressed his appreciation for the continued interest of UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan.

Fall, a former prime minister of Guinea, was appointed on 3 May to head an expanded UNPOS, which was intended to raise the profile of Somalia during the transitional period.

Somalia has had no functioning central authority since the collapse in 1991 of the government of Muhammad Siyad Barre. Civil war erupted in the Horn of Africa state soon after Barre was toppled as various factions and rival warlords fought for power.


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