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Arms sanctions outdated, not benchmarked, Somalia says

Saturday November 16, 2019

NAIROBI (HOL) - Somalia has described the arms embargo imposed by the UN Security Council as an open-ended regime with no benchmarks to attain before it is lifted.

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Reacting to the passage of Resolution 2498 (2019), Somalia’s Permanent Representative to the UN Abukar Dahir Osman said the decision to extend the arms embargo was not informed by the progress Somalia has made in the noting the sanctions were outdated.

“Not only the (sic) measures of the outdated Somalia’s sanctions regime fall short to take into account Somalia’s positive new reality on the ground, but they also are not properly aligned with Federal Government’s flagship policy of rebuilding a unified and sufficiently equipped Somali National Army capable of safeguarding our people and territory,” Osman told the Council.

Noting that millions of dollars had been spent on subsequent monitoring groups, Osman said, the initiative was ‘not sustainable and will not properly address the root causes of the problem.’

The Council Friday passed the resolution in a majority vote to extend the embargo which has been running since 1992 though with some revisions to allow Somali government import certain caliber of weapons.

Ambassador Osman also told the Council the ongoing construction of the military based by the UAE in Berbera continues to violate Somalia’s territorial integrity and is in defiance of Security Council resolutions.

Observing that Somali government will not tolerate the naming of Somali individuals and business enterprises being named in past, current or future without reasonable standard of proof, Osman called for restructuring of the Panel to bring in experts with high level of technical expertise.

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