SOMALIA: Prime Minister Sharmarke negotiates the first phase of a peace agreement in Galkayo
Galkayo (RBC Radio) The Prime Minister of the Federal Republic of Somalia H.E. Omar A. A. Sharmarke successfully negotiated a ceasefire and a two (2) kilometer pullback of troops on each side.
In follow up to the recent Abu dhabi agreement on the conflict in Galkayo between Puntland and Galmudug regions, Prime Minister Sharmarke travelled to Galkayo and over last week worked to negotiate an immediate ceasefire and an initiation of preliminary talks for a lasting peace agreement. After the first meeting, the two sides formed an eighteen (18)-member negotiations team to continue dialogues in Kismayo as per the agreement.
Yesterday, the Prime Minister visited the frontlines to physically witness the disengagement of troops. He met with Presidents Abdiweli Mohamed Ali and Abdikarim Hussein Guled at the site whereby the leaders ordered their troop commanders to implement the shifting of troops to new assigned locations.
In a statement to the media, the Prime Minister announced the progress made and called on the two sides to honour the agreement, avoid any incitements, and work towards a peaceful co-existence of the inhabitants of Galkayo and its environs.
“What happened over the last month and weeks in Galkayo is very unfortunate. It is the responsibility of all here and absent to make sure we do not see a repeat. ” He said
Prime Minister Sharmarke commended the efforts of SRSG Michael Keating, the AU and IGAD delegations. He particularly emphasized on the important facilitation role played by the SRSG and the commitment conveyed by visiting Galkayo twice over the period of negotiations. The Prime Minister welcomed continued facilitations and the formation of a joint UN & IGAD Galkayo ceasefire monitoring team to help ensure the parties respect the agreement reached. He also informed both parties to guarantee the security of this team.
Prime Minister Sharmarke called for the return of normalcy in Galkayo and encouraged the displaced civilians to come back to their homes. He sympathized with their challenges and asked the parties to consider their calamitous situation, particularly in a difficult drought season.