UAE’s Somalia outreach receives plaudits

A UAE newspaper has said that top political leadership in Somalia has expressed gratitude to the rulers of the UAE for their unstinted humanitarian efforts aimed at alleviating suffering in the African nation.

“A high-level delegation visiting Abu Dhabi comprising Somalia’s former President, Sharif Shaikh Ahmad, and former Prime Minister, Omar Abdirashid Ali Sharmarke, thanked the UAE for its continued support to the troubled country,” said Gulf News in an editorial on Wednesday.

The paper continued, “Earlier this month a deadly terrorist bomb attack in Mogadishu, Somalia’s capital, killed close to 400 people and left more than 500 injured. Located strategically in the Horn of Africa, Somalia has witnessed famine, extremism and instability for a very long time.

“The country’s leaders have been looking at avenues to provide jobs to millions of Somalis, a majority of whom are under the age of 35. With unemployment rate hovering at 66 percent, the country urgently needs to put its economy in shape. Perennial challenges like famine and piracy have to be addressed.

“Aware of the myriad problems facing Somalia, the UAE has been at the forefront of international efforts to provide aid and assistance to the country. During the beginning of this year, the UAE pledged AED500 million to Mogadishu.

“The Emirates Red Crescent also launched an aid campaign named “For Your Sake, Somalia” aimed to kick-start development projects in the country. Under the directives of President His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, a unified media campaign broadcast, “For You Somalia”, was simultaneously launched by Abu Dhabi, Dubai and Sharjah TVs, as well as local radio stations to mobilise support for a campaign launched to curb the famine in Somalia.

“The UAE’s solidarity and support to Somalia is commendable. It will go a long way towards ensuring stability and peace in the Horn of Africa,” concluded the Dubai-based daily.


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