First Published: 2008-10-31

 
Somali PM pledges to form new cabinet
 

Hussein says he is going to establish new cabinet within two weeks, excluding ministers who resigned.

 

Middle East Online

Hussein survived a no-confidence vote last month



NAIROBI - Somali Prime Minister Nur Hassan Hussein pledged Friday to form a new cabinet within two weeks in line with a directive from regional presidents and to try and save his troubled government.

The Somali cabinet collapsed in August when several ministers quit amid infighting between Hussein and President Abdullahi Yusuf Ahmed, paralysing government and parliamentary operations.

"We are going to establish a cabinet within 15 days, but without including ministers who resigned from my government. This is an accordance with IGAD (Inter-Governmental Authority on Development) directive," he told reporters in Nairobi.

"The new government will work together in order to make progress in security, development and reconstruction in our country," he added.

On Wednesday, IGAD presidents told Somali rulers to form a new cabinet to avoid a power vacuum.

Hussein also said he would pressure parliament to finalise the drafting of a new constitution as well as to enact electoral and political parties' laws within six months in line with the IGAD directive.

The Federal Transitional Charter, which gives the current government a governing mandate, expires in September next year. Attempts to write a new Somali constitution have been thwarted by conflict and political feuds.

"The constitution will be drafted very soon and subjected to a referendum," Hussein said.

The Ethiopian army invaded Somalia in late 2006 to rescue Somalia's embattled transitional government and oust the Islamic Courts Union (ICU), which controlled of much of the country's central and southern regions.

The ICU had ruled much of Somalia with relative peace and prosperity until the Ethiopian involvement.

Since then, ICU fighters have waged a deadly insurgency against the Ethiopian and the transitional government forces.

But Ethiopian troops’ retaliations have caused many casualties among Somali civilians.

Since the Ethiopian invasion, about one million Somalis have fled their homes. An estimated 6,500 civilians have been killed.

Aid workers estimate 2.6 million Somalis need assistance. That number is expected to reach 3.5 million by the end of the year if the humanitarian situation does not improve, according to the UN.

In May 2008, Amnesty International accused the Ethiopian troops in Somalia of increasingly resorting to throat-slitting executions, highlighting an "increasing incidence" of gruesome methods by Ethiopian forces that include rape and torture.

Since the ousting of the ICU, Somalia had plunged into unprecedented chaos, where warlords and pirates have returned to the scene.

Many in Somalia see the departure of Ethiopian troops as a precondition to peace negotiations.

 

France looks to boost ties with Gulf countries

Hundreds of residents protest against Qaeda control of Yemen city

Iraq Sunnis stay away from Tikrit for fear of revenge-seeking militias

Police foil attack against Prophet Muhammad exhibition in Texas

War against spiky hairstyles: Iran threatens to punish barbers

Saudi Arabia considers ‘temporary’ halt in coalition air strikes

Taliban soften position after Qatar talks

Israel seeks to ease tensions with angry Ethiopian community

UN gears up to host separate talks with Syria rival sides

Qatar signs deal for 24 French Rafale fighter jets

Lebanon security forces arrest IS-linked cleric

Recent disasters fail to slow tide of desperate migrants

Rumour of Al-Duri killing breathes life into shadow of Iraq dictator

Closure of last overland route chokes off Lebanon exports

Syria army tightens crippling siege on rebel bastion

Terror threats against Jews: Israel warns and Tunisia denies

Arab coalition deploys ‘limited’ force on ground in Aden

Syria army launches offensive on rebel attacks in regime bastion

Istanbul under security lockdown on May Day

ICC will consider Palestinian war crimes too

Dutch anti-Islam lawmaker 'warns' America against Muslim immigration

Ban warns fuel shortages threaten Yemen relief operations

Iran trying to buy nuclear technology

Iraqi Kurd leader to meet Obama next week

Yemen rebels launch first major attack on Saudi

Sudan maintains balancing act with Saudi Arabia, Iran

Syria, Iran vow to step up fight against ‘terrorism’

Iran warships reach entrance of key Yemen strait

Iraq offers amnesty to personnel who fled ‘Islamic State’

UN envoy urges Israel to lift Gaza Strip blockade

France set to sell Qatar 24 Rafale jets

Mali peace deal tatters

Saudi-led coalition pounds rebels in south Yemen

Iran opposition leader: Tehran ‘godfather’ of IS

Saudi king concentrates power in his inner circle

Sadr threatens to attack US interests over budget provision

France increases defence budget in response to extremist threats

Hamas silences pro-unity protest in Gaza Strip

Turkey acquits all leaders of 2013 protests against Erdogan

Iraq seeks to counter IS propaganda victory in Anbar

After four decades, Prince Saud al-Faisal steps down as Saudi Foreign Minister

Sisi vows elections for 2015

Iraqi peshmerga leave Syria’s Kobane

Iran-Saudi war of words heats up

Bahrainis jailed, stripped of nationality, for 'terrorist acts'