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Volume 450: debated on Monday 23 October 2006

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what assessment she has made of the regional implications of the Union of Islamic Courts gaining control of Mogadishu and Kismayo, Somalia. (94305)

The security situation in Somalia remains extremely fragile and further conflict could have serious implications for stability in the Horn of Africa. We continue to believe that the Transitional Federal charter for Somalia and the institutions created under it are the only existing mechanism for restoring long-term stability. This is the mechanism approved by the UN. We continue to urge all parties inside and outside Somalia to refrain from action that could provoke violence, to respect the UN arms embargo on Somalia and to pursue a peaceful resolution through dialogue under the Khartoum process.