The UN Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs, Lynn Pascoe, expressed his solidarity with the people of Somalia during a one day visit to Mogadishu yesterday (Wednesday). Mr Pascoe, who was accompanied by the UN Special Representative for Somalia, Augustine P. Mahiga, met President Sheikh Sharif and Cabinet Ministers at the Presidential Compound known as Villa Somalia.
Mr Pascoe encouraged the leaders of the Transitional Federal Government to reach out to other groups and to focus on governing the country.
â€œIt is crucial to show the long suffering people of Somalia that the Government can deliver basic services,â€ said Mr Pascoe. â€œThe international community is very interested in supporting the TFG, but the Government itself needs to do more and learn to work as a cohesive teamâ€.
Mr Pascoe and Mr Mahiga also met the Force Commander and members of AMISOM and visited the AMISOM hospital where they witnessed the African Union peacekeeping troops treating Somali civilians.
The Under-Secretary-General praised the work of the African Union forces deployed in Somalia since 2008 in an effort to help stabilize the Government and commended the UN for providing them with logistic support. At the same time he called for more troops as well as financial and logistical support for the 7,000-strong force.
Mr Pascoe has been on a regional trip aimed at shoring up peace and stabilization efforts in Somalia. He attended a meeting of the Africa Peace Envoys in Cairo, and travelled from there to Djibouti, Eritrea and Ethiopia where he met with Heads of State and Governments, diplomats, humanitarian non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and UN aid agencies.
For more information, please contact: Susannah Price
UN Political Office for Somalia (Nairobi, Kenya)