President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud has hailed the European Union (EU) for its support in rebuilding Somalia’s security institutions.
President Sheikh Mohamud applauded the European Union during celebrations to mark Europe Day, held in Somali capital, Mogadishu.
“Today I have seen a lot of projects and programmes that are funded by the European Union in Somalia. And every day, every month, every year, these programmes are increasing in number. And the role of Somalis in participating in these programmes is also increasing. We are very much grateful,” stated the President.
He appealed for more youth focused projects to address the rising youth unemployment in the country.
The European Union Ambassador to Somalia Michele Cervone d’Urso pledged more support to Somalia.
“Our (EU) agenda is very clear. Our future is intertwined with yours. We are building it together. We are committed to a stable Somalia and if you look at issues such as migration, radicalization, economic development, and security cooperation, we have a common agenda. But above all, I am proud I can also claim without any reservation that the well-being of the Somali people always comes first,” emphasized Ambassador Cervone.
He announced the broadening of the scope of EU engagements in Somalia in areas of migration, supporting community resilience, fighting human trafficking, and countering violent extremism, among others.
“We mean business in Somalia. We are committed and the partnership I must say has been growing over these years. And it’s not just the normal slogans we tend to say sometimes on these occasions,” he added.
The event was attended by diplomats accredited to Somalia, Somali Federal Government officials, civil society representatives, senior representatives of the United Nations and the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM). Also present were senior commanders from the European Union Training Mission in Somalia (EUTM) as well as the Indian Ocean-based EUCAP Nestor, the EU maritime agency that is involved in saving migrants in the Gulf of Aden.
The two leaders – President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud and Ambassador Cervone – later presided over the groundbreaking of the construction of the European Union Mission headquarters in Somalia.
Europe Day is being marked by several activities all week, in various countries, across the world.