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Somalia secures African Union endorsement for UN Security Council seat

Friday February 16, 2024 (HMC) – The Somali government announced that the African Union’s Executive Council has designated Somalia as East Africa’s sole candidate for a non-permanent seat on the United Nations Security Council.

 

Ali Omar Balad, Somalia’s Minister of State for Foreign Affairs and acting Foreign Minister, confirmed in an interview with the BBC that Somalia’s path to the seat is uncontested, thanks to the withdrawal of two initial competitors. “By the end of 2024, Somalia will officially take its place on the council,” Balad stated, marking a return to the Security Council since Somalia’s last representation in 1973.

The non-permanent seat, rotated every two years, offers nations a platform to participate in critical global decision-making processes. Somalia’s unchallenged candidacy reflects its diplomatic efforts and the strategic withdrawal of Tanzania’s candidacy, facilitated by Somalia’s concession of a leadership position in the World Parliament to Tanzania.

 

Ambassador Abukar Baale, Somalia’s representative to the United Nations, is set to assume this role, signalling Somalia’s readiness to engage with international issues more actively. Baale was recently honoured with Hiiraan Online’s Person of the Year for his diplomatic contributions to Somalia’s recovery on the global stage.

 

The announcement has been hailed as a “diplomatic victory” by Somalia’s Information Minister, Abdirahman Yusuf, illustrating the country’s successful navigation of international diplomacy to bolster its standing.

Somalia’s campaign for the Security Council seat was marked by extensive diplomatic outreach, including efforts by Prime Minister Hamse Abdi Barre to secure support from Horn of Africa countries and beyond. The campaign’s success, as highlighted by former Foreign Minister Abshir Omar Haruse, was also attributed to Somalia’s leadership within the African Union in coordinating candidacies for international organizations.

 

This achievement comes against the backdrop of Africa’s ongoing quest for greater representation on the United Nations Security Council. The continent, which has allocated three non-permanent seats divided among its eastern, northern, and western regions, has united in advocating for two permanent seats to enhance its influence in global governance. The collective African stance on this issue underscores the continent’s aspirations for a more equitable role in international decision-making processes. Somalia’s forthcoming tenure on the Security Council marks a meaningful step forward in this direction.

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