Addis Ababa: Somalia's Peace Process Incomplete
The establishment of Somalia's transition government was a "major achievement" but the peace process there remains incomplete, the Ethiopian foreign ministry said Monday.
"Ethiopia recognizes that the peace process needs to be completed by bringing into the peace process the other Somali parties that did not participate at the Arta conference" in Djibouti, the ministry said in a communiqué.
The Ethiopian authorities are "encouraged that President Abdulkassim (Salat Hassan) and the transitional government in Somalia share this conviction," it said.
Salat was appointed president in August by a transitional parliament formed during a reconciliation process in Arta. The government is the first in Somalia since the central government collapsed under the pressure of clan warfare in 1991.
Somalia's warlords are bitterly opposed to the reconciliation process, most refusing to recognize the transitional government.
Salat last week traveled to Addis Ababa where he met Prime Minister Meles Zenawi and Foreign Minister Seyoum Mesfin.
The communiqué said President Salat had given the "assurance that the transitional government would do everything possible to remove all elements that use Somali territory as a springboard to threaten regional peace and stability and in this regard to cooperate with the concerned neighboring countries."
The two sides agreed that "peace process in Somalia should continue through dialogue and that only through dialogue can full national reconciliation be achieved," the statement said -- ADDIS ABABA (AFP)
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