ETHIOPIA, KENYA AGREE TO INTENSIFY JOINT EFFORTS TO BRING PEACE TO HORN OF AFRICA

NAIROBI– Ethiopia and Kenya have emphasized the importance of the role they play in regional peace and security and have agreed to intensify their joint efforts to bring peace and security to the Horn of Africa sub-region, in particular in South Sudan and Somalia.

A joint communique issued after talks here Monday between visiting Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed and Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta, said the two leaders expressed their deep disappointment at the slow pace of progress in the ongoing efforts to restore peace in South Sudan.

The two leaders pledged their full commitment to the mediation efforts being led by the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development, the eight-nation Horn of Africa grouping currently chaired by Ethiopia. In this regard, they urged the leaders of South Sudan to place the interests of their people above their own in order to give peace a chance.

Noting that the al Shabaab militant group continues to pose a significant threat to Somalia and the region, the statement stated that they expressed concern at the continued lukewarm international support for Somalia, in particular the inadequate and unpredictable funding for AMISOM, the African Union Mission in Somalia, which poses a threat to gains made thus far.

In this respect, Ethiopia and Kenya are committed to continue lobbying for adequate and sustainable support to AMISOM, including provision of force multipliers for the mission in Somalia, as well as training for the Somalia security forces.

The leaders of two nations also identified cross-border security challenges exacerbated by vulnerable communities, as being obstacles to sustainable peace.

Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK