Somaliland: “EU to Continue Direct Engagement with Hargeisa” Amb D’Urso

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SDF main Financial Instrument for disbursing EU funds to Somaliland under the New Deal-Dr OmarAmb dUrso and Dr Omar at the press conference in Hargeisa

By: Yusuf M Hasan

HARGEISA (Somalilandsun) – The European Union-EU has informed that it will continue dealing with the Hargeisa Based administration directly in all matters related to its cooperation and interventions in Somaliland.

This was informed by the EU envoy to Somalia/Somaliland Ambassador Michele Cervone d’Urso during a joint press conference held with Foreign minister Dr Mohamed A Omar at the presidency following conclusion of a meeting with President Ahmed Mahmud Silanyo.

Ambassador D’Urso who is leading an EU delegation to the country also informed that the European body has handed over the Sheikh Veterinary technical School-SVTS based in Sahil Region to the Inter-Governmental Authority for Development-IGAD.

“I wish to thank the Somaliland president for the support given to the SVTS which the EU has now handed over to IGAD after ten years since the pioneer specialised veterinary school that trains student from IGAD member countries was initiated by the EU” said Amb

The EU diplomat who is a regular visitor to Somaliland has been in the country for two days and has so far supervised the SVTS hand over to IGAD as well as met the country’s legislators before his parley with President Silanyo.

During his diversified meetings in Hargeisa the EU envoy’s main thrust of interest was in ensuring that local authorities are well versed on the New Deal program and Somaliland’s commitment to the process.

The New Deal is a program that shall facilitate partnership and interaction between the EU and African Countries among them Somaliland for the next three years as pertains to Aid, Security and Politics among other areas.

According to Amb D’Urso discussions on various issues with the head of state which concluded in total acquiescence mostly revolved around various issues Chief among them Somaliland’s commitment to the new deal program since governance and peoples inclusion is key to the success of the new EU program geared towards engagement with African countries for the next three years. Others were

• How the EU is going to integrate Somaliland into its New Deal engagement policy with African countries

• The September conference in Brussels where the EU is soliciting international support for its new deal and Somaliland’s commitment to the new deal and participation in the conference.

• EU’s continued direct aid and support to the government and people of Somaliland as well as the financial instruments to be utilized.

The European Union with over €50m contribution for various sectored developments through local and international organizations as well as the government is the biggest single donor to Somaliland.

Upon thanking the EU for clearly stating its commitment to direct dealings with Somaliland as usual, foreign minister Dr Mohamed Abdilahi Omar Re-emphasis that international donor support to Somaliland shall never be channelled through the Mogadishu based Somalia Federal Government-SFG.

Dr Omar also informed that the EU as well as other foreign governments and international partners shall start channelling their kitty of largesse directly to Somaliland through the Somaliland Developmdent Fund which the Hargeisa administration jointly operates together with the governments of the United Kingdom and Denmark.

Both the EU envoy Amb Michele Cervone d’Urso and foreign minister Dr Mohamed Abdilahi Omar were in unanimity that any future EU funding shall be utilized as per the strategies put by the Somaliland government in itsnational development plan  and vision 2030

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