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Somalia still has serious issues, U.N. told

April 26, 2013 at 10:43 AM

UNITED NATIONS, April 26 (UPI) -- Somalia isn't yet at a place where it sees a political and national security future that's free of problems, the Somali ambassador to the United Nations said.

British Foreign Secretary William Hague visited Mogadishu this week to open the British Embassy in Somalia for the first time since 1991. Hague said the country has witnessed "a dramatic shift" but had "huge challenges."

Somalia last year formed a functioning central government for the first time in more than 20 years and took control over territory from al-Shabaab, a militant group allied with al-Qaida. The group took responsibility for the recent bombing of a courthouse in Mogadishu, however.

Somali Ambassador to the United Nations Elmi Ahmed Duale said the country has made significant progress but wasn't "at a place where we can see the light at the end of the tunnel."

U.N. Undersecretary-General for Political Affairs Jeffrey Feltman said a U.N. mission through 2016 would act to help Somali make further political progress.

"The new mission represents a fresh start for the United Nations in Somalia and a renewed commitment by the Council to support Somali-owned peacebuilding," he told the Security Council.

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