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Somalia: Peacekeeping Operations

Volume 474: debated on Thursday 24 April 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what discussions (a) he, (b) his Department and (c) UK representatives have had with (i) members and (ii) representatives of (A) the governments of member states of the European Union, (B) the Government of Russia, (C) the Government of the United States, (D) the governments of member states of the African Union, (E) the Government of Ethiopia, (F) the Transitional Federal Government of Somalia and (G) the United Nations Secretariat on the (1) security situation in, (2) humanitarian situation in, (3) political stability of, (4) African Union deployment in and (5) UN augmentation or replacement of the African Union deployment in Somalia; and if he will make a statement. (199213)

The Government maintain regular contact, at ministerial and official level, with all parties the hon. Member lists in his question, including:

EU Heads of Mission meetings in Nairobi; EU Political Counsellors meetings in Nairobi; Africa Working Group meetings in Brussels; bilateral meetings with officials of member governments of the EU;

bilateral discussions with: the USA; member states of the African Union, including Ethiopia, and the Transitional Federal Government of Somalia; and

discussions in New York and Nairobi with the United Nations Secretariat and with member states of the UN Security Council, including Russia, USA and members who are also EU and African Union members.

For example, my noble Friend the Minister for Africa, Asia and the UN, the right hon. Lord Malloch-Brown, met President Abdullahi Yusuf in London on 21 January 2008; Prime Minister Nur Hassan Hussein in Addis Ababa on 1 February 2008; and the UN Secretary-General's Special Representative, Ahmedou Ould Abdalla, in London on 17 March 2008.

All discussions aim to maintain a coordinated international response to improve the political, security and humanitarian situation in Somalia and to support the Transitional Federal Institutions and Transitional Federal Government to restore peace, stability and governance to Somalia, as envisaged in the Transitional Federal Charter.