The Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for Somalia, James Swan has recognised the critical role played by the African Union troops in ongoing efforts to stabilise Somalia.
Mr. Swan, who was appointed to the position by the UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres in May this year, on Tuesday arrived in Mogadishu, Somalia to take up his new assignment.
In his first engagement, Mr. Swan met with senior officials of the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) led by Ambassador Francisco Madeira.
Mr. Swan, who was accompanied by UN officials, said, “We have no more important non-Somali partner than the African Union. This relationship is critical to our collective regional and international efforts to support Somalia and the Somali people.”
Present in the meeting were Simon Mulongo, the Deputy Special Representative of the Chairperson of the African Union Commission (DSRCC) for Somalia and the AMISOM Force Commander Lt. Gen. Tigabu Yilma Wondimhunegn.
Other officials included Raisedon Zenenga the Deputy Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General in Somalia and Brig. Simon West the UNSOM Senior Military Advisor, AMISOM Deputy Force Commander in charge of Operations and Plans, Maj. Gen. Nakibus Lakara, and the Acting AMISOM Police Commissioner Rex Dundun.
Mr. Swan saluted African Union troops for fighting armed groups and pledged cooperation to restore peace in Somalia.
In his remarks, Ambassador Madeira said AMISOM would benefit from Mr. Swan’s vast knowledge of Somalia.
“We will seek coordination, collaboration, and harmonisation of positions to ensure that aspects of inclusive politics are enhanced in order to yield results,” said Ambassador Madeira.