The United States strongly condemns al-Shabaab’s criminal attack in Mogadishu on September 12 directed against Somalia’s new leader.
Somali lawmakers meeting in the capital Mogadishu have elected the East African nation’s new president, an important step toward its transition to democracy and effective government.
Hassan Sheikh Mahamoud, a former university professor and United Nation’s children’s fund official, bested the incumbent president Sheikh Sharif Ahmed on the second ballot September 10th. With the stepping down of Somalia’s prime minister and parliamentary speaker and the naming of a new parliament, the nation has entirely new leadership to tackle the many challenges still facing it.
The United States congratulates President Mahamoud for winning the support and confidence of the nation’s lawmakers, as well as the Somali people for completing this momentous political transition. Lacking a stable central government for more than 20 years, the nation has been torn by clan and political infighting, besieged by insurgents and disrupted by internal displacement caused by the fighting and a persistent drought. The election results suggest a new sense of unity to address these problems and others.
The United States calls on Somalia’s new leaders to usher in a new era of governance that is responsive, representative and accountable. We encourage them to build on the vote by continuing to strengthen democratic institutions, improving stability and security, and bringing tangible improvements to the lives of their countrymen.
The United States strongly condemns al-Shabaab’s criminal attack in Mogadishu on September 12 directed against Somalia’s new leader. The assailants were prevented from reaching the President thanks to the courage and professionalism of the Somali Security Services and their AMISOM allies. The United States firmly supports the Somali people in their rejection of terrorism and political violence.
We stand with the Somali people at this historic moment and will continue to be a committed partner moving forward. While the vote marks an end to the six-year transition process, much work remains to be done. We call on the international community to also reaffirm its commitment to Somalia and to help realize a more secure and prosperous future for its citizens.