The Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General (SRSG) in Somalia Michael Keating today welcomed the agreement on a ceasefire in the city of Gaalkacyo reached in Abu Dhabi by the President of Puntland, Abdiweli Mohamed Ali “Gaas” and President of Galmudug, Abdikarim Hussein Guled.
The agreement commits the two regional presidents to refraining from incitement to violence through the media, to supporting the return of people displaced by the conflict to their homes, and to appointing joint committees to find lasting solutions to the conflict. This follows an agreement reached between the two regional leaders almost one year ago in December 2015 that has not been implemented.
Mr. Keating commended the role of the United Arab Emirates in facilitating this new agreement. He urged the two regional presidents to take immediate action to ensure its implementation. The SRSG highlighted the indispensable role of community leaders and the business sector in Gaalkacyo in finding a peaceful solution to the crisis. He commended the role they have consistently played to defuse tensions and restore normal social and commercial interaction between northern and southern Gaalkacyo.
“This is a positive step,” said SRSG Keating. “The ball is now in the court of Presidents Gaas and Guled to deliver on unfulfilled promises and to act in the best interests of the people of Galmudug and Puntland.”