Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta said Kenya’s only interest in Somalia is to bring peace and stability to its neighbouring country, which had been devastated by civil war and Al-Shabaab militants for more than 20 years until recently.
Peace and stability in Somalia is in the interest of not only Somalians but the entire Horn of Africa region, the president said during a meeting with chairperson of the African Union (AU) Commission, Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma here Thursday.
The president said Kenyan forces in Somalia were operating there under the umbrella of AU Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) to restore normalcy to that country.
“I re-affirm that Kenya stands ready to help the Somalian people and government during the reconstruction process and I appeal to the international community to support regional efforts,” he said.
President Kenyatta also expressed his government’s full support for the Inter-Governmetal Authority on Development (IGAD) agenda on Somalia, saying normalcy in that country and Horn of Africa was in the best interest of peace in the region.
“Kenya’s military forces will continue operating under the AMISOM command to ensure execution of the mandate of the regional peacekeeping mission,” he said.
Saying that peace and security was central to AU’s agenda, the President re-affirmed his government’s commitment to ensure Kenya continued playing its rightful role in the search for peace and sustainable development in the region and continent.
President Kenyatta and Dr. Dlamini-Zuma also discussed a wide range of issues focusing on bolstering trade and investment with a view to improving living standards of people in the continent.
Dr. Dlamini-Zuma, who is on a working visit to Kenya, briefed the president on the oncoming AU Summit which is expected to consult and agree on the African agenda for the next 50 years as the AU commemorates its 50th anniversary.
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