Somalia Regional Leaders Resume Talks on Election Impasse


MOGADISHU (Somaliguardian) – Somalia’s regional leaders have resumed talks over elections stalemate on Saturday, just hours after a meeting scheduled to take place last night was postponed due to interference by the outgoing president Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo.

The leaders of Puntland Saed Deni, Hirshabelle Ali Gudlawe, Galmudug Ahmed Qoorqoor, Jubaland Ahmed Madobe and Southwest Abdiasis Laftagaren are meeting at the heavily fortified Halane base camp in Mogadishu, which is home to international diplomatic missions, including those of the United Nations and the United States.

The talks are mediated by the foreign ambassadors in Mogadishu who facilitated efforts to bring together the 5 regional state leaders, including 3 that allied themselves to Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo in the dispute over delayed elections.

The agenda for the meeting is on ways to remove obstacles ahead of resuming talks between president Farmajo and the federal member state leaders to break deadlock over the country’s elections, with the incumbent allegedly playing significant efforts in serving beyond his term in what many critics have described as an “automatic extension of mandate”.

Regional leaders walked out of meeting held on Thursday night at Halane base after pro and anti-Farmajo state heads traded accusations, with Jubaland and Puntland accusing the other state leaders of propping up a dictatorship.

Despite growing international pressure, it is unclear if the regional leaders will agree on the resumption of talks with president Farmajo to resolve tensions over the electoral process, although Puntland and Jubaland presidents are still pressing the federal government to answer their demands.

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