UN Urges Somalia’s New President to Build Inclusive Government

Posted September 11th, 2012 at 9:50 am (UTC-5)
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International leaders are urging Somalia's new president to build a government that will unite and stabilize the country.

The United Nations and European Union issued statements on Tuesday congratulating newly-elected President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud.

U.N. chief Ban Ki-moon urged the Somali leader to move quickly to appoint an inclusive government that “can begin the work of peacebuilding.”

The European Union said the new government should work “with integrity” toward development and reconciliation.

After taking office Monday, President Mohamud asked the Somali people to help establish a functioning government after more than two decades of chaos and conflict.

In an interview with VOA before his election, President Mohamud said he would work to move beyond clan lines that have divided the country.

“In a clan setting, you can only produce a clan leader; you cannot produce a national leader. Here, in the political parties, we intend to produce national leaders. Our main focus is that,” he said.

Somalia's outgoing transitional government was marked by infighting and an inability to effectively govern.

The presidential election marks the final phase of a U.N.-backed plan to bring a stronger, more permanent government to Somalia.

The country has not had a stable central government since 1991.