Somalia: UAE minister says Somali Govt creating ‘unnecessary’ tension
ABU DHABI - UAE’s Minister of State for Foreign Affairs said that Somalia has created “unnecessary tension” after seizing one of the Emirates aircraft carrying millions of dollars.
“The current Somali government, and through a number of transgressions of previous arrangements and understandings with the UAE, has created unnecessary tension with a friend and ally that has stood by Somalia’s stability and security in the darkest times, and we urge for wisdom and rationality,” tweeted Dr Anwar Gargash late Tuesday.
The UAE said that the jet was seized at Mogadishu airport on Sunday carrying US$9.6 million (Dh35.3m) in cash allocated for the Somali army.
Forty-seven UAE Armed Forces personnel were on board the plane and some were held at gunpoint and assaulted by Somali security forces, state news agency Wam reported.
The Bahraini foreign minister, Khalid bin Ahmed, condemned on Tuesday the seizure of the UAE aircraft.
“The UAE has held a number of conferences to support Somalia, and in the presence of the Somali president. It has stood by Somalia against pirates and provided support with money, arms and medicine,” he said on Twitter.
“Somalia has only responded by denying, insulting and hiding in the arms of the nation’s enemies.”
The UAE has been supporting Somalia’s armed forces for years, as part of its efforts to bring stability to the fragile state.
It has also taken a lead in efforts to stabilise Somalia, which has grappled with lawlessness and been regarded as a 'failed state' for more than two decades and sought to co-ordinate post-conflict reconstruction.
The foreign affairs ministry has led the re-establishment of diplomatic ties between the UAE and Somalia and has overseen the opening of the UAE Embassy in Mogadishu in 2013.