International Contact Group on Somalia’s meeting held in Jeddah

December 17, 2009

The 16th Session of the International Contact Group on Somalia (ICG) was held today at the headquarters of the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC) in Jeddah, with the participation of Somali Prime Minister Omar Abdulrasheed Ali.

Addressing the meeting, OIC Secretary General Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu stressed the importance placed by his organization on finding a peaceful solution to the crisis. The Somalis need to be given hope through rehabilitation, reconstruction and economic development in order to make life worth living, he said. To achieve this, the current Somali government requires massive international support to build a viable economic base and institutions. The Secretary General concluded by announcing that the OIC will open a humanitarian mission in Mogadishu beginning in January 2010 to assist in reconstruction. Moreover, the OIC Humanitarian Affairs Department, along with a coalition of civil society organizations in member states, will soon move forward with $50 million worth of humanitarian projects.

During his own remarks, Dr. Adel Mirdad, head of the General Department of Islamic Affairs at the Saudi Foreign Ministry, stressed the urgent need for all Somali parties to come together, highlighting the Kingdom’s efforts to help them reach reconciliation.

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