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Tanzania vows to help boost Somalia's defense and security


CHINEDU OKAFOR
Monday April 29, 2024

Tanzania intends to put its weight behind Somalia, the East African Community's newest member. Tanzania's president, Samia Suluhu Hassan, has committed to help Somalia boost bilateral trade. This is part of the president's continuous drive to improve Tanzania's connection with the rest of East Africa.

A report by the Tanzanian newspaper, The Citizen shows that President Samia Hassan promised to assist its fellow East African state, Somalia in areas such as defense and security.

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She made the announcement during a press briefing at the State House in Dar es Salaam, on the 27th of April, after she met with the president of Somalia, Hassan Sheikh Mohamud, who is on a visit to Tanzania.

“We have expressed our readiness as a country to provide training in various fields, whether in defense and security or other areas of government service,” President Hassan said.

“We have assured them of our support in building their capacity as a country to defend themselves,” she added, commending the president of Somalia for his efforts in advancing his nation’s priorities and peacefully overseeing its agendas.

This marks the first time the Somali president has stepped foot in Tanzania since assuming office. While there he attended the country’s 60th Union anniversary between Tanganyika and Zanzibar.

The president of Tanzania also mentioned that both countries after the meeting have found new avenues for cooperation despite their already long-standing sturdy relationship.

“We have seen the importance of having a formal system to enhance this relationship; we intend to strengthen cooperation meetings between Somalia and Tanzania, and through our sectorial meetings we will identify areas and projects of cooperation that are beneficial to both of us,” President Hassan said.

Contention between Somalia and Ethiopia

Friction between Ethiopia and Somalia over Somaliland has been brewing for some time now, with conflict being avoided at every turn. At the beginning of the year, the landlocked country of Ethiopia touted its new plan to gain direct access to the sea.

The plan entailed signing a deal with Somaliland, a region Somalia considers a breakaway state. In response Somalia officially declared the sea access partnership between Somaliland and Ethiopia unlawful.

The president of Somalia, Hassan Sheikh Mohamud passed a bill that “nullifies” the port deal, with Somalia even going as far as saying it would stop at nothing to protect its territorial integrity. Somalia considers Somaliland a part of its territory, while Somaliland considers itself a sovereign state.



 





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