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New Somali ambassador to Turkey aims to boost bilateral security and trade

Friday April 19, 2024

MOGADISHU (HOL) — Somalia has dispatched its new ambassador to Turkey, marking a significant step in enhancing diplomatic relations between the two countries.

Ambassador Fathudin Ospite left Mogadishu on Thursday, following a ceremonial farewell with President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud at Villa Somalia. Ambassador Ospite expressed his commitment to the role via social media, stating, "It is an honour to represent my country in this new capacity to forge strong diplomatic ties between Somalia and Türkiye."

Prior to his departure, Ambassador Ospite discussed bolstering bilateral relations with his Turkish counterpart in Mogadishu, Ambassador Alper Aktas. Their conversations focused on security and trade enhancement. "We discussed enhancing our bilateral relations with particular focus given to security and trade," noted Ambassador Ospite.

The appointment of Ambassador Ospite is part of a broader diplomatic initiative by Somalia, with ten new ambassadors taking posts globally this year.

Expanding Defence Ties Amid Regional Tensions

This diplomatic exchange aligns with a significant expansion of the defence cooperation between Somalia and Turkey, building on a defence agreement signed on February 8, 2024, now extended to include maritime cooperation. The development is particularly poignant as tensions escalate between Somalia and Ethiopia, with the latter seeking access to the Red Sea via the breakaway state of Somaliland.

According to sources, Turkey has committed to training and equipping Somalia's naval forces to secure its extensive coastline of 3,333 kilometres.

Turkey's Multifaceted Role in Somalia

Since initiating its involvement in Somalia with humanitarian efforts in 2011, Turkey has broadened its role to encompass economic, infrastructural, and military support. Turkish companies managing Mogadishu's key logistics hubs — the port and airport — have been pivotal in Somalia's post-conflict recovery.

Turkey's dedication to Somalia's military readiness has been emphasized by the establishment of a training base in Mogadishu in 2017. The base is crucial for the Gorgor Brigades, an elite unit of the Somali National Army.


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