Somalia has reiterated its call on the UN to lift the three decades arms embargo on the Horn of Africa nation to battle the militant group Al-Shabaab and stabilize noting the lack of weapon power has weakened efforts to restore peace.
President Mohamed Farmaajo told heads of states and governments during the 33rd Ordinary Summit of the AU in Addis Ababa the arms embargo had stifled efforts to fight Al-Shabaab and realise peace following many years of instability.
“The United Nations arms embargo on Somalia limits our ability to acquire the weapons necessary to defeat terrorists who carry out home-based bombings against innocent citizens and private businesses,” Farmaajo said.
The Somali leader noted that contrary to opinion that Somalia does not have the capacity to monitor weapons, Farmaajo said ‘Somalia is committed to full responsibility of its security forces’, adding the country need to better equip its military.
The President’s remarks add to continued calls by the Horn of Africa nation on the UN Security Council to end the arms import restrictions which it imposed in 1992 following widespread violence months after the central government collapsed.
The UNSC has gradually eased the restrictions on arms import with the last such resolution in 2014 allowing Somalia to import certain caliber of weapons to equip the military.
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However, UN Monitoring Group reports have in subsequent years reported cases of pilferage and sale of arms in markets within the country.
Somalia has termed the arms embargo outdated and called for its lifting to enable the country battle Al-Shabaab.