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Somalia, Ethiopia vow to cooperate in fight against Al-Shabab

By Staff reporter , Garowe Online
Ethiopian PM shakes hands with Somali officials and ministers as he arrives in Mogadishu on Saturday, June 16

MOGADISHU, Somalia - The leaders of Somalia and Ethiopia announced Saturday that they agreed to cooperate in combating terrorism and that the fight must be taken up by all countries in the region, Garowe Online reports.

Ethiopian prime minister, Abiy Ahmed who paid a one-day visit to Mogadishu on Saturday, June 16 has pledged his country's cooperation in fighting Islamist militants during talks with Somali President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo.

Ahmed stressed that peace and stability were necessary for the development of the East African nations and that all threats from Al-Shabaab and other terrorist groups critical to these values must be tackled head-on.

"The peace and stability were crucial for the development and prosperity of both countries and hence we agreed to work together in the war on terrorism including cross-border attacks," said Abiy in a joint statement.

The PM has lauded Somali Federal Government's commitment to overcoming the security challenges with the support of the regional powers, adding that Somalia is now on the path towards sustainable peace and development.

For his part, President Farmajo appreciated Ethiopian troops' role in the stabilization efforts of Somalia, which he said is a backbone to the African Union Mission in Somalia [AMISOM].

Abiy and Farmajo have urged the regional countries to contribute positively to Somalia's peace and state-building efforts in the Horn of Africa nation that was beset by decades-long conflict, terrorism and piracy.

Saturday's visit by Ethiopian premier to Somalia is seen as an attempt to legalize port deals in the country after the Federal Parliament has nullified last May the tripartite Berbere port agreement, which Addis Ababa holds 19% stake.