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Somalia: Armed Conflict

Volume 474: debated on Wednesday 2 April 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what discussions (a) he, (b) members of his Department and (c) UK representatives overseas have had with (i) members and (ii) representatives of (A) the Transitional Federal Government of Somalia, (B) the government of Ethiopia, (C) the European Union Commission, (D) the governments of member states of the European Union and (E) the United States administration on the recent increase in fighting in (1) Mogadishu and (2) elsewhere in Somalia; and if he will make a statement. (197177)

The Government maintain regular contact with all of the relevant actors. My noble Friend the Minister for Africa, Asia and the UN, the right hon. Lord Malloch-Brown, met with President Yusuf in January 2008 and with Prime Minister Hussein at the African Union Summit in February 2008, where he also met Prime Minister Meles of Ethiopia. Officials at our high commission in Nairobi and our embassy in Addis Ababa are in regular contact with the Transitional Federal Government of Somalia, including the President and Prime Minister, and with the Government of Ethiopia. Officials in London, overseas in Nairobi, Addis Ababa, Washington, in Brussels and at the UK Mission to the UN in New York are in regular contact with their counterparts in other EU missions, with the EU Commission and the US administration. Close co-operation with our international partners ensures that our messages and assistance to Somalia are consistent, mutually reinforcing, and supportive of efforts made by the UN Special Representative of the Secretary-General to achieve progress on political, security and humanitarian tracks.