Mark Bowden, the outgoing humanitarian coordinator for Somalia in the UN, has called for an increase in aid in Somalia. The nation has just recently completed its grueling 9-year transition to a functional democracy (at least on paper) with a new parliament, constitution, and prime minister. Tribal violence has also diminished to a low after decades of discord. Skimping on aid now, particularly when recently developed institutions are new and delicate, could put fledgling political advancements at risk and cause a new surge of violence and upheaval.
The Secretary-General’s Special Representative and the head of the UN Political Office for Somalia (UNPOS), Augustine P. Mahiga, issued a statement on the state of Somalia via video link to the Security Council. During the conference, Mahiga stressed the need for reinforcement for the new government, stating, “It is now very clear that the new federal Government urgently needs tangible, concerted, well-coordinated support from the Security Council, all United Nations bodies, and the international community to enable and empower the new government in implementing and achieving the end goals of the [President's Policy]…I urge the international partners to sustain and expand their assistance to Somalia to prevent it from sliding back into famine and misery.”
In the past year, Somalia has also experienced a crippling drought, which landed millions into hunger and grotesque conditions. The UN described the situation in Somalia as “the worst humanitarian disaster” in the world. A hungry population could lead to riots, violence, and a revival of recently subdued insurgency.
The new government has also backed obligatory education for all children, which could be put at risk if the new administration delves once again into violence.
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