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New Somalia President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed sworn in | Coastweek

MOGADISHU Somalia (Xinhua) -- Somalia’s new president Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed [left] speaks during the inauguration ceremony in Mogadishu, capital of Somalia. Somalia’s new president Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed is seen [second front right] and with Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta [first front right] during the inauguration ceremony in Mogadishu. Somalia’s new president Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed, widely known as 'Farmajo', was inaugurated on Wednesday at a colorful ceremony attended by regional leaders who pledged support for the new government. XINHUA PHOTOS - FAISAL ISSE

New Somalia President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed is sworn in

MOGADISHU Somalia (Xinhua) -- Somalia’s new president Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed, widely known as Farmajo, was inaugurated on Wednesday at a colorful ceremony attended by regional leaders who pledged support for the new government.

African leaders from Djibouti, Kenya, Sudan, Uganda and Ethiopia attended the ceremony, which was held at the fortified Mogadishu International Airport.

Speaking after being inaugurated as the ninth president of Somalia, Farmajo pledged to restore dignity to the Horn of Africa nation by tackling security and economic challenges.

Farmajo, who was elected on Feb. 8 and vowed to make security his top priority, also said his government would try to deal mainly with drought crisis, confidence building and fixing economic challenges.

"There have been conflicts and droughts for the last 26 years, so it will take another 20 years to fix this country," he said and appealed for support from the international community.

Farmajo’s election is seen as a step forward toward democracy for Somalia, which has not had an effective central government since the collapse of Siad Barre’s military regime in 1991 that led to civil war and decades of anarchy.

Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta said his government was committed to working with Somalia’s new administration in search for sustainable peace.

"I assure you of Kenya support, my government will stay steadfast in search for sustainable peace in Somalia," said Kenyatta whose country hosted a protracted negotiations that culminated in the formation of transitional government of Somalia in 2004.

"You assume office at a time of great expectations; this is both here and in the diaspora," he told the new Somalia leader, lauding the peaceful transfer of power.

Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn said the Somalia’s presidential election was a good example for conflict-riddled countries in Africa and congratulated Farmajo on his success over the election.

"We stand side by side with Somalia on its journey to stand with its feet," said Desalegn.

The ceremony took place amid tight security in Mogadishu as security forces were deployed to the venue and the rest of the capital including all main roads to prevent disruption by Al-Shabaab.
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UPDATE:

Somali new president appoints  new prime minister Hassan Ali Khaire

MOGADISHU (Xinhua) -- Somali President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed on Thursday appointed former humanitarian worker, Hassan Ali Khaire as the country’s new prime minister.

Khaire, who used to work for the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC) as a regional director, holds a dual Somali-Norwegian citizenship and is a businessman. He was also the director of the African division of the British oil explorer Soma Oil and Gas Holdings.

President Mohamed named his prime minister a day after his inauguration witnessed by regional leaders and members of the international community.

Khaire was cleared last year by the United Nations after he was mentioned in a UN monitoring report in 2015 to have had links with extremist groups in the Horn of Africa.

Mohamed made the announcement before departing for his first official trip as president to Saudi Arabia.

Khaire will now form a new Council of Ministers and submit the candidates, including himself, to the Somali Parliament for review.

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Conflict-ridden Somalia inaugurates new president

MOGADISHU (Xinhua) -- Somalia’s new president Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed, widely known as Farmajo, was inaugurated on Wednesday at a colorful ceremony attended by regional leaders who pledged support for the new government.

African leaders from Djibouti, Kenya, Sudan, Uganda and Ethiopia attended the ceremony, which was held at the fortified Mogadishu International Airport.

Speaking after being inaugurated as the ninth president of Somalia, Farmajo pledged to restore dignity to the Horn of Africa nation by tackling security and economic challenges.

Farmajo, who was elected on Feb. 8 and vowed to make security his top priority, also said his government would try to deal mainly with drought crisis, confidence building and fixing economic challenges.

“There have been conflicts and droughts for the last 26 years, so it will take another 20 years to fix this country,” he said and appealed for support from the international community.

Farmajo’s election is seen as a step forward toward democracy for Somalia, which has not had an effective central government since the collapse of Siad Barre’s military regime in 1991 that led to civil war and decades of anarchy.

Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta said his government was committed to working with Somalia’s new administration in search for sustainable peace.

“I assure you of Kenya support, my government will stay steadfast in search for sustainable peace in Somalia,” said Kenyatta whose country hosted a protracted negotiations that culminated in the formation of transitional government of Somalia in 2004.

“You assume office at a time of great expectations; this is both here and in the diaspora,” he told the new Somalia leader, lauding the peaceful transfer of power.

Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn said the Somalia’s presidential election was a good example for conflict-riddled countries in Africa and congratulated Farmajo on his success over the election.

“We stand side by side with Somalia on its journey to stand with its feet,” said Desalegn.

The ceremony took place amid tight security in Mogadishu as security forces were deployed to the venue and the rest of the capital including all main roads to prevent disruption by Al-Shabaab.

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EARLIER REPORT:

Severe drought displaces 135,000 people inside Somalia: United Nations

MOGADISHU Somalia (Xinhua) -- Severe drought has displaced more than 135,000 people inside Somalia since November 2016 as the number keep on growing, the UN refugee agency said on Tuesday.

According to data compiled by United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), the Norwegian Refugee Council and community based organizations, swift and substantial action and adequate funding are becoming urgently needed to avoid famine and a repeat of 2011, when some 250,000 people died, more than half of them aged under five years.

"There have been reports of deaths and illness, although these are not widespread. On Sunday, we received reports of 38 deaths due to drought-linked reasons in the Bakool region of South-Central Somalia," UNHCR said in a statement.

According to the authorities in Puntland, more than 20,000 families have moved to the Bari region while 1,638 others are in need of emergency assistance in the northern town of Galkayo.

According to the report, people are leaving their homes because of the drought, rising food prices, dry weather forecasts, and ongoing insecurity and are heading for urban areas.

"This includes to Mogadishu and the town of Baidoa. The government is seeking to have aid provided to people in their districts in order to avoid people making long a dangerous trip on foot in search of help," UNHCR said.

Through an inter-agency response, UNHCR and partners are working to mitigate against deterioration into famine including tackling rising malnutrition, limiting displacement, and containing disease outbreaks and enhancing protection.

"This includes through the provision of emergency shelter and aid items to thousands of people and through strengthened protection monitoring," UNHCR said.

Drought is also pushing some to flee the country. as at the start of the year, over 3,770 Somali new arrivals have been recorded at Melkadida in Ethiopia, and acute malnutrition has been reported in around 75 per cent of arriving child refugees.

"No substantial movement into Kenya has been reported so far," it said.

The drought comes as UNHCR continues its voluntary repatriation program for Somali refugees in Kenya’s Dadaab complex, which has brought home 49,985 people since December 2014.

"UNHCR is informing people in the camps about the drought, but so far this does not appear to have had a major effect on returns," it said.
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FURTHER READING:

'Farmaajo' inaugurated as the ninth President of Somalia in a colourful ceremony

           

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