By: Yusuf M Hasan
ADDIS ABABA (Somalilandsun) – The foreign ministry is utilizing the 20th African Union-AU Summit in the Ethiopian capital of Addis Ababa to lobby for recognition.
This was revealed by the Somaliland minister of foreign affairs Dr Mohamed Abdilahi Omar who is in Addis Ababa where he has already held constructive talks with senior Egyptian, German and Kenya officials attending the summit.
Dr. Omar informed this during an interview with reporter Muha Dahir of the AU fronted Journalists for African Renaissance (JAR) and Somaliland national Television in Addis Ababa.
“Considering our unrecognized status as a sovereign country it is part of our foreign policy to lobby for recognition during this AU Summits” Said Dr Omar.
While briefing on his meetings with the Egyptian, German and Kenya officials, the foreign policy boss informed that existing bi-lateral relations were enhanced as well as entering into arrangements for direct diplomatic and government to government engagement.
The foreign minister added that several similar meetings are in the pipeline and shall be held in the sidelines of the 20th AU Summit which has brought most African heads of state and representatives of western governments and international donor organizations to the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa.
Dr Mohamed A Omar stressed on the significance of the weeklong 20th Ordinary Session of the African Union Assembly of Heads of State that also commemorated the Golden Jubilee celebration for the 50th Anniversary of the establishment of the OAU/AU, was marked on 25 May 2013
Said he, “The AU is very conducive to the wishes of the citizens of Somalilanders as can be ascertained by the report released by a fact finding mission the African body send to Somaliland”
At the same time the foreign minister extended apologies to the government of Ethiopian for accusations made against the country’s embassy in Hargeisa by a local newspaper.
Dr Omar refuted the newspaper report which alleged that members of the diplomatic mission in Hargeisa are involved in the smuggling of illegal alcoholic drinks and drugs like cannabis.
“While this allegation is baseless it is very serious as it might lead to damaged relations between friendly countries” Said Dr Omar
He urged members of the country’s fourth estate to act ethically in addition to exercising caution as pertains to the information they avail the public