On visit to Kismayo, Head of UNSOS reassures UN support to Somalia peace process
Kismayo - On her maiden visit to Kismayo, the Head of United Nations Support Office in Somalia (UNSOS), Assistant-Secretary General Ms. Aisa Kirabo Kacyira, reiterated UNSOS’ commitment to providing effective and responsible logistics support to ATMIS and SSF as its contribution to the overall strengthening of peace and security in the Horn of Africa nation.
“I am confident that with team spirit, and commitment, we will be able to make it. Let us remember that the yardstick of whatever we do, would be the resilience of the Somali people once we have left,” said Ms. Kacyira.
“Let us go the extra mile to ensure that we can deliver the best of our ability to contribute to the training, capacity building and in every possible way to ensure that we have a lasting, sustainable, peaceful, safe and vibrant Somalia because they (Somali’s) truly deserve it,” she added.
The Head of UNSOS made the remarks during a meeting with the UN and the African Union Transition Mission in Somalia (ATMIS) personnel based in Kismayo, Jubaland’s administrative capital.
She was accompanied by the Special Representative of the Chairperson of the African Union Commission (SRCC) for Somalia, Ambassador Mohamed El-Amine Souef and senior UNSOS and ATMIS officials.
The delegation was received by Jubaland State’s Minister of Planning and International Cooperation Abdirahman Abdi Ahmed and other local administration officials.
The Head of UNSOS also noted that the UN logistical support body is coordinating with all stakeholders to facilitate the second phase of the withdrawal of 3000 ATMIS troops from Somalia at the end of September.
“We are cognizant that the threat is still real, and therefore, we just want to ensure that as the drawdown continues, we ensure that peace and security is upheld,” she said.
UNSOS played a key role in facilitating the success of the first phase of the drawdown of 2000 troops and the handover of six Forward Operating Bases to the Somali Security Forces (SSF) in June.
To ensure continuity, UNSOS handed over several equipment and facilities to the SSF including water treatment plants, generators, solar panels, and accommodation units. The UN body also facilitated the movement of personnel and repatriation of troops.
Recalling the UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres' visit to Somalia in April this year, Ms. Kacyira urged the international community to continue supporting the country's stabilisation efforts and help combat the devastating effects of climate change on livelihoods.
UNSOS is mandated by the UN Security Council to provide logistical support to both SSF and ATMIS uniformed and civilian personnel working in various parts of the country.
Ambassador Souef who also addressed the UN and ATMIS personnel, commended the global body and international partners for their role in creating a secure environment, that has enabled Somali people to take ownership and re-establish governance in the country.
“Today Somalia has made great progress, and that progress is due to your commitment, input, and support in terms of securing the country and conducting operations against Al-Shabaab. Today, people in Somalia can live safely,” noted Ambassador Souef.