We remain Somalia's biggest donors, US diplomat says

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MOGADISHU, Somalia - The United States of America now says it remains Somalia's biggest donor to matters security, stability, and humanitarian aid, adding that it is committed to pushing for the democratization of the Horn of Africa nation.

For decades, Somalia has been in shambles with little progress despite huge investments by various stakeholders, who have consistently helped in rebuilding the country. Most of the institutions in the country are dysfunctional.

US ambassador to Somalia Larry Andre told the Voice of America that Washington is committed to supporting Somalia’s revival as a stable, peaceful, and democratic country. The ambassador was deployed to the country recently.

“Through the provision of humanitarian, security, and development assistance, we remain Somalia’s biggest donor," he said, just amid ongoing local elections which are sponsored by the US but are yet to be concluded.

US embassy to Somalia also insisted that the US is committed to supporting the democratization of the country while condemning those who have been trying to silence critics due to divergent political views.

"We stand for the protection of political space and democratic gains in Somalia. Freedom of expression is fundamental to democracy. True political discourse must include a diversity of views. The United States condemns any attempts to silence those who advocate those principles," the embassy said.

Outgoing President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmaajo has often been accused of using security forces to silence critics. The Gorgor and Haramacad security forces have previously been linked to political violence in the country.

On press freedom in Somalia, Ambassador André said the United States is committed to supporting freedom of the press globally. Journalists have also been facing difficulties while covering functions in the country.

“Providing training for journalists and advocating for freedom of expression in Somalia are high priorities for us in Mogadishu,” added the envoy, whose main task now is to ensure the country holds elections within the next few days.

GAROWE ONLINE

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