António Guterres visits Somalia, appeals for $825m

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On 7 March 2017 saa 10:15
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UN Secretary-General António Guterres has landed in Mogadishu for his first trip since he took office in January in what he terms "a show of solidarity with Somalia people".

His emergency visit is meant to draw global attention to the humanitarian crisis facing the Horn of Africa nation.


"People are dying. The world must act now to stop this," Guterres tweeted to announce his arrival in Mogadishu.

On arrival, he held a meeting with Somalia’s new President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed, after which he is expected to visit people affected by hunger and cholera.

In their meeting, President Farmaajo urged US President Donald Trump to lift ban imposed on Somalia immigrants.

Mr Guterres said the challenges facing Somalia— a combination of hunger, drought, conflict and disease— require massive response.


"We need to make as much noise as possible," he said. "Conflict, drought, climate change, disease, cholera. The combination is a nightmare."

He appealed for $825 million (Sh82.5 billion) to help alleviate the humanitarian crisis in the Horn of Africa nation.

This time, the UN chief said, they were better organised to respond to situation, referring to the UN, International Committee of the Red Cross, NGOs working in Somalia, the international community and the Mogadishu government.


Somalia is part of a massive $4 billion aid appeal launched last month for four nations wracked by conflict, drought and hunger.

The others are Nigeria, Yemen and South Sudan, with Unity State bearing the brunt of the crisis.

"I was at UNHCR when South Sudan became a state in 2005 and accompanied the refugees returning home," recalled Guterres. "Now it’s a case of enormous hope turned into enormous tragedy! With 1.5 million refugees."

He added, "We have told the leaders to cease hostilities, dialogue and allow access to humanitarian organisations as well as UNMISS."

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UN Secretary-General António Guterres is received in Mogadishu on march 7, 2017.

Source:Daily Nation