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Remarks by Ambassador Jürgen Schulz during the Security Council VTC Meeting on Somalia, May 21, 2020

21.05.2020 - Speech

Check Against Delivery

Mr. President, let me start by talking about the political cooperation between the Federal Government and all federal member states. We have talked about this many times, but I think it cannot be stressed enough. This is a key element of all efforts, if you want to see Somalia go forward in the right direction. It is the basis for reaching sustainable progress. One example: coordination meetings should be resumed swiftly and take place regularly in order to resolve outstanding issues like the constitutional reform or open questions on the electoral process. 

We take note of the progress made in preparation of the elections, yet are concerned that the Electoral Code does not include a 30 per cent quota for women. Let me also underscore that credible, free and fair ‘one person, one vote’ elections in late 2020 or early 2021 are key to the democratic state-building in Somalia, and will be the yardstick by which the current Somali administration will be measured.

We acknowledge the challenges presented by COVID-19 in continuing with the preparations for the elections, but want to make clear that this should not hamper the FGS from answering unresolved questions on the basis of a broad political consensus and in full cooperation with FMS.  

A return to 2016’s clan-based model must be avoided. We need to see concrete progress towards implementing the principle one-person-one-vote wherever possible.

Mr. President, we would like to commend progress reached in the security sector.

However, the security situation remains a great challenge. We are concerned about the high frequency of attacks by al-Shabaab.  

To update and implement the Security Transition Plan, a comprehensive approach to security is essential. It needs Somali ownership and buy-in from all stakeholders and partners, as well as a focus on the build-up of capacities of the Somali Security Forces in order to enable them to fully take over the security responsibility in the country. 

Against this backdrop, we must pursue a constructive discussion on international support to the Somali security sector over the next months, also with a perspective of the upcoming independent assessment. 

AMISOM has been of key importance for the security situation in Somalia since its inception. The EU has contributed very significantly to supporting AMISOM with a total of almost 2 billion dollars since 2007. Germany is convinced that AMISOM will continue to be one of the corner stones of this international support to the Somali security sector for the time being. 

Turning to the humanitarian situation and COVID-19-related repercussions, we remain extremely concerned about the current humanitarian situation. The current flooding and increased spread of desert locusts clearly show the aggravating consequences of climate change for the humanitarian situation and fragile statehood in Somalia. 

COVID-19 causes additional challenges. We welcome the measures taken by the Somali authorities to combat the spread and call upon all international partners to support Somalia in this regard.  

It is essential that under these circumstances humanitarian access is maintained and humanitarian principles are fully respected.  We will continue our humanitarian engagement in Somalia. The EU is very heavily and seriously engaged in humanitarian support for Somalia. Germany is doing the same bilaterally and nationally. Germany has already provided over 55 Mio. EUR for humanitarian assistance. In light of the worsening humanitarian situation, further commitments are being considered. 

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