Sweden donates 3 million for Somalia peach effort

Published on Wednesday 18th June 2008

Sweden: Sweden is contributing SEK 3 million to support the continuing peace efforts in Somalia under UN leadership. After mediation by the UN, Somalia's Transitional Federal Government (TFG) and the opposition Alliance for the Re-Liberalisation of Somalia (ARS) were able to agree on a ceasefire on 9 June.

"I welcome the ceasefire agreement and the continued political dialogue that Somalia's transitional government and the opposition alliance have agreed upon under UN leadership. I am pleased to see that, with this agreement, the parties are signalling their willingness to take on responsibility for the future of the Somali population," says Minister for International Development Cooperation Gunilla Carlsson.

"This political opening has long been sought, but all the same it is a fragile one, and that is why it is important for Sweden and the rest of the international community to quickly show our support and contribute to the UN's continued mediation work," says Ms Carlsson.

For 17 years, Somalia has been marked by internal armed conflict and the lack of a feasible political solution. The ceasefire agreement that the transitional government and the opposition alliance reached in Djibouti on 9 June will soon be signed.

The parties have committed to cease all fighting 30 days after the agreement enters into force; the ceasefire will last for 90 days, after which time the agreement can be extended.

In addition to the ceasefire, the parties agreed to request an international stabilisation force for Somalia; this force is to pave the way for a withdrawal of Ethiopian troops. The international community is urged to contribute resources so that the agreement can be implemented. An international donor conference, to be held within six months, has been announced.