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IGAD members seek to hasten stabilization in Somalia

(160830) — MOGADISHU, Aug. 30, 2016 (Xinhua) — Security members gather at the explosion site in Mogadishu, capital of Somalia, on Aug. 30, 2016. At least seven people were killed and several others injured in a bomb explosion that hit a popular hotel in Mogadishu on Tuesday, police have confirmed. (Xinhua/Faisal Isse) (syq)
 
MOGADISHU, Sept. 13 (Xinhua) — Leaders from the East African region kicked off a day-long summit in Somali capital Mogadishu on Tuesday, vowing to hasten stabilization efforts in Somalia.
The special Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD) Summit, which was attended by Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta, Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni and Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn, discussed the progress Somalia has made toward security and stability.
In his opening remarks, Ethiopia’s Desalegn called on the region to speed up efforts to pacify as well as develop Somalia, which has been facing stiff challenge from Al-Shabaab militants.
“We will support Somalia’s recovery both in security and infrastructure development,” the Ethiopian PM told the summit which also focused on upcoming elections in Somalia, crisis on South Sudan, and more cooperations among members states in the region.
Desalegn, who is also the IGAD chairman, said Somalia had made progress on the path of peace and stability but much more needed to be done.

(160830) -- MOGADISHU, Aug. 30, 2016 (Xinhua) -- Somali residents search their belongs at the site where a house collapsed in Mogadishu, capital of Somalia, Aug. 30, 2016. At least two people died and several others wounded when a house collapsed in Mogadishu on Monday night. (Xinhua/Faisal Isse)
(160830) — MOGADISHU, Aug. 30, 2016 (Xinhua) — Somali residents search their belongs at the site where a house collapsed in Mogadishu, capital of Somalia, Aug. 30, 2016. At least two people died and several others wounded when a house collapsed in Mogadishu on Monday night. (Xinhua/Faisal Isse) 

“We are not there yet, but IGAD is confident that its efforts will succeed in the complete restoration of peace and stability in Somalia,” he said.
The summit, the first IGAD Heads of State and Government meeting held in Mogadishu since the regional bloc was established in 1986, urged regional countries to continue engaging Mogadishu proactively in order to sustain the stabilization efforts.
Kenyan President Kenyatta lauded Somalis for their determination to address the challenges confronting them, particularly incidences of violent extremism and terrorism.
He said holding the IGAD Summit in Mogadishu is an attestation of the confidence the region has on the Federal Government of Somalia and its progress toward the restoration of peace and stability.
He encouraged the Somali authorities to ensure the implementation of governance and state formation as envisioned in Somalia Vision 2016 as they head to elections next month.
He also assured that the international community and partners are ready to support Somalia to ensure that the elections are held in a timely manner and in accordance to the will and wishes of the Somali people.

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