The adoption of the roadmap and the withdrawal of Shabaab from Mogadishu are positive steps forward, but the Somali people are still suffering. It’s time for full implementation and results.Italy is playing a strong part in the framework of the international community’s efforts to give an adequate response to the unprecedented humanitarian crisis. Italy is and will remain among the largest bilateral contributors to Somalia in various fields.
Now that there is a roadmap, the Transitional Federal Institutions need to step up the pace of reforms and meet the benchmarks they have agreed on. It is urgent that they become the driving force behind a viable, federal Somali State. A civilian strategy is essential. First, the TFIs need to focus immediately on delivering basic services to the population.
Second, political reconciliation demands the commitment of the TFIs to share power with all the regional and local entities. I therefore call upon Puntland, Galmudug, Somaliland and the other local administrations to join in this effort. I commend also the efforts of the Prime Minister of Somalia. Your success will attract those segments of Somali society that are still in the opposition. For the national reconciliation process to be truly successful, it must exopand progressively to the rest of the country, while fighting and defeating terrorist groups.
Third, security. The TFIs, with the help of AMISOM – whose efforts and sacrifice I warmy commend – must re-establish order and restore the legitimate use of force solely to the Somali Security Forces in the areas under their control. Italy is supporting these efforts by paying the salaries of 3,200 Somali soldiers and training the Somali forces in the framework of the EU Training Mission (EUTM) as well as providing technical assistance to Security Forces.
Piracy is a plague on Somalia and on the international community: it cannot be defeated simply by patrolling the Ocean. It must be tackled on Somali territory with the cooperation of the TFIs. A three-fold strategy must be pursued: deterrence, development, and effective prosecution. We are deeply concerned by the fate of all the hostages in the hands of pirates and we expect the TFIs to do everything in their power to assure their release. The lives of the 11 Italian hostages still being held are a priority concern for my Government.
Dear Prime Minister, dear Somali friends, You have important challenges ahead. To meet them, you can seek the assistance of the UN, the African Union, IGAD and the European Union.
The strengthening of the UN as well as the international presence in Somalia will offer further support to the local authorities. We confirm that we decided the re-opening of our Embassy in Mogadishu.
I call upon those States that can do more to do more to help Somalia with all the resources at their disposal. Helping Somalia also means helping ourselves; protecting people by enhancing security and preventing extremists from creating a network of terror from the Horn of Africa to Northern Africa.
Ladies and gentlemen,There is only one scenario we envision for post-August 2012: a stable federal State. But we are all well aware that reconciliation and governance are firstly in Somali hands.