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Volume 448: debated on Monday 3 July 2006

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what representations she has made to the Government of Ethiopia regarding incursions into Somalia. (80270)

My noble Friend the Under-Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, Lord Triesman of Tottenham, spoke with Prime Minister Meles late last week and our ambassador in Addis Ababa spoke with the Ethiopian Deputy Foreign Minister in mid-June. We made clear to the Ethiopian Government our concerns about the current situation in Somalia and also that, with the UN, the UK regards the Transitional Federal Government as the legitimate Government of Somalia. The UK believes it is important that all states refrain from any actions that might destabilise the situation, respect Somalia’s borders and comply with the current UN arms embargo on Somalia. The international community, including regional states, should focus on promoting dialogue among the Somalia parties in support of the agreement reached between the Transitional Federal Government and the Islamic Courts in Khartoum on 22 June 2006.