Somalia may review Kenya ties after PM plane crisis

Somali delegation headed by Somali Prime Minister, Omar Abdirashid Ali Sharmarke held talks with Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta at Kenyan State House.

MOGADISHU, Somalia-Somali government officials have withered words for neighbouring Kenya over its disrespect for a delegation led by Prime Minister Omar Abdirashid Ali Sharmarke, Garowe Online reports.

By Saturday, Kenyan authorities prevented Prime Minister Sharmarke from racing in a fleet of cars parked outside Jomo Kenyatta International airport in recess enroute to the Turkish city of Istanbul.

Though Somalia has yet to officially present diplomatic note to Kenya, Federal Member of Parliament Abdullahi Jama, who is accompanying the Prime Minister told VOA Somali Service that Somali parliament will have a session on the humiliating incident perpetrated against the high level delegation.

The brief stranding attracted the attention of Kenyan media, with Standard running ‘Somali Prime Minister detained in Nairobi’ on its front-page on Sunday morning.

Sharmarke departed Nairobi for Turkey late on Saturday night, with his entourage whom authorities interrogated at Criminal Investigation Department (CID) flying in the morning.

Kenyan sources claim that the Prime Minister failed to obtain clearances at Jomo Kenyatta because of his failure to get inspected at Wajir airport where flights from and to Somalia go through for security checks.  

Authorities seized the passports of accompanying delegation members including ministers, staffers and MPs.

Kenyan Defence Forces (KDFs) crossed the border into Somalia in 2011 to go after Al Shabaab militants in the extreme south.

Somalia’s ties to Kenya have worsened in the past, with the war-ravaged East African country once recalling its ambassador for consultations.


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