Ex-presidents and MPs briefly barred from leaving Mogadishu for Beletweyne

Ex-presidents and MPs briefly barred from leaving Mogadishu for Beletweyne Source: Hiiraan Online, Source: Hiiraan ÖSunday November 10, 2019 MOGADISHU (HOL) – Former Presidents Hassan Sheikh Mohamud and Sheikh Sharif Ahmed were held back from traveling to Beletweyne for a couple of hours in Mogadishu Sunday. The leaders and MPs allied to the newly formed Forum for National Parties who were scheduled to travel to Beletweyne to deliver humanitarian supplies at about 9am left the airport two hours later.MPs who spoke to the media said the opposition group was barred from travelling since Prime Minister Hassan Khaire was also scheduled to head to the floods ravaged town in central Somalia. The Prime Minister was in Bardale town in Bay region Saturday where he met with families displaced by the current floods. Former President Sheikh Sharif Ahmed was blocked in September 22 from traveling to Kismayu to attend then inauguration of Jubbaland president Ahmed Madobe. Relations between the opposition groups and the government has been rocky in recent months amid accusations by the opposition against the federal government of suppressing freedom of expression and...

Ethiopia: Moving beyond Ethnic Politics

Ethiopia: Moving beyond Ethnic Politics Source: Foreign Policy posted on 8 November 2019 Foreign Policy posted on 8 November 2019 a commentary titled “Ethiopia Will Explode If It Doesn’t Move Beyond Ethnic-based Politics” by Addisu Lashitew, Brookings Institution. The author argues that in order to keep the country together, Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed needs to convince various ethnic groups that he and his new party represent all Ethiopians. 0 comments  Labels: Abiy Ahmed, Amhara Region, conflict, EPRDF, Ethiopia, ethnic federalism, Jawar...

US calls for dialogue in resolving political disputes in Somalia

US calls for dialogue in resolving political disputes in Somalia Source: Hiiraan, Thursday November 7, 2019 MOGADISHU (HOL) – The US has called for dialogue in resolving political disputes in Somalia in apparent reference to the developments in Puntland which saw the state parliament speaker kicked out in a vote Thursday. A statement from the US embassy in Somalia noted there was need to resolve political difference in a peaceful manner.“The United States calls on the Federal Government of Somalia, all Federal Member States, and citizens of Somalia to work towards political reconciliation, cooperation, and unity through peaceful dialogue,” the statement read in part. Noting that Somalia had made ‘impressive progress in key area’, the US ambassador to Somalia Donald Yamamoto said he encouraged ‘all actors to come together and remain focused on working with Somalia’s international partners to bring peace, stability, and prosperity to Somalia.’ Though he did not make reference to the developments in Puntland Wednesday and today, the remarks pointed to concerns over what happened in Puntland. Speaker Abdihakim Dhoobo Daared was ousted out in a vote Thursday by MPs in Puntland state parliament. Majority of the MPs-49 out of 53 voted in favour of the impeachment...

Trump ‘to open Ethiopia’s controversial dam’

Trump ‘to open Ethiopia’s controversial dam’ Source: BBC, Saturday November 9, 2019 Water flows through Ethiopia’s Grand Renaissance Dam as it undergoes construction work on the river Nile in Guba Woreda, Benishangul Gumuz Region, Ethiopia on September 26, 2019. PHOTO | REUTERS  US President Donald Trump has told ministers from Ethiopia, Egypt and Sudan that he will “cut the ribbon” at the inauguration of the controversial Grand Renaissance Dam when it is completed, an Ethiopian minister says. Sileshi Bekele, Ethiopia’s minister for water and irrigation, said Mr Trump made the comments during US-mediated talks aimed at solving a diplomatic row between the three countries over the sharing of the River Nile’s waters. During the meeting, the three sides agreed to hold further talks in the US, and to reach a final settlement by 15 January. Speaking to reporters (in Amharic) on Thursday, Mr Sileshi said:”President Trump sat with six people [two from each country] and tried to understand the situation. At the end of the discussion, he said he’d want to cut the ribbon with us on the inauguration.” “But he stressed that we should avoid differences and work in cooperation. He’s given direction to the treasury secretary to lead discussions for smooth, quick and careful completion of the project.” A joint statement issued on behalf of the three countries by the US Treasury Department did not mention any plans by the US president to open the dam. The $4bn dam, the structure of which is expected to be finished next year, is at the heart of Ethiopia’s manufacturing and industrial dreams. When fully operational, it is expected to...

Somalia’s hopes of IGAD post dashed as Ethiopian becomes Executive Secretary

Somalia’s hopes of IGAD post dashed as Ethiopian becomes Executive Secretary Source: Hiiraan Online, Saturday November 9, 2019 MOGADISHU (HOL) – Former Ethiopian Foreign Minister Dr Workneh Gebeyehu ascended to the helm of leadership at the regional bloc IGAD Thursday effectively sealing off hopes of long alienated members top on the list-Somalia. Ethiopian Prime Minister who is the current chairman of the eight-member bloc appointed Dr. Gebeyehu late last month to take over from Ambassador Mahboub Maalim, a Kenyan who had hitherto been in the post since 2008.Maalim was appointed in June 2008 and later reappointed for another two four year term in 2012. Somalia is the only member which has never held the position of Executive Secretary since the regional bloc was formed in 1986 and later reformed in 1996. Both Somali and Djibouti had been eyeing the position of the Executive Secretary and chairman but reports indicated Kenya and Ethiopia which are also major financial contributors to the regional bloc planned to swap the positions. Ethiopia has held the position of chairman since 2010 when then Kenyan president Mwai Kibaki handed over to Prime Minister Meles Zenawi who later bequeathed his successor Desalegn Hailemariam. Current Premier Ahmed Abiy is the holder of the same position. The ordinary heads of state summit will formally endorse Dr. Gebeyeh’s appointment. The same summit will also decide on who will take over the chairmanship of the regional bloc. Should the supposed pact between Kenya and Ethiopia prevail, then most likely President Uhuru Kenyatta will become the new chair of the bloc. There have been calls for reforms in the regional bloc...

Preventing Another Collapse in South-Sudan

Preventing Another Collapse in South-Sudan Source: The International Crisis Group published on 4 November 2019 The International Crisis Group published on 4 November 2019 a paper titled “Deja Vu: Preventing Another Collapse in South Sudan.” South Sudan is heading toward a crisis as it nears a 12 November deadline to form a government. President Salva Kiir is threatening to leave opposition leader and former vice president Riek Machar, who is demanding a delay to the new government, out of a new cabinet. Even if the two leaders agree to share power, disputes over security arrangements and state boundaries would poison the new administration, potentially leading to its collapse. 0 comments  Labels: AU, borders, governance, IGAD, Riek Machar, Salva Kiir, security, South...