Wednesday November 2 2011

Somali president in Kampala to meet Museveni

By Risdel Kasasira

Somali president, Sheikh Sharif Ahmed arrived in Uganda on Tuesday with a delegation of ministers and legislators on a two day state visit, sources said.

He was scheduled to meet President Museveni on Wednesday to discuss the seemingly never-ending Somalia conflict.

Radio Mogadishu on Tuesday quoted the head of the presidential information department, Mr Sutan Ahmed, saying the two presidents were going to discuss the second phase of the offensive against Al-Shabaab.

However foreign Affairs spokesperson, Mr Elly Kamahungye was tight-lipped on giving details of the visit. “I have no details about his visit,” he said.

The acting foreign affairs minister, Mr Henry Okello and Parmenanent Secretary, Ambassador James Mugume who would have otherwise commented on the visit were reportedly out of the country.

Uganda forms a bulk of 9,000 African Union forces that are battling Al-Shabaab insurgents who are fighting to overthrow the government of President Sharif.

Ugandan forces guard key government installations like the airport, seaport, State House, parliament and also have carried out key operations against Al-Shabaab.

The Somali leadership is trying to drum up regional and continental support to flush the insurgents out of Somalia.

His visit came after his Prime Minister, Abdeweeli Ahmed Ali signed a security pact with the Kenyan government that will see the two governments jointly fight the Al-Shabaab militants in southern Somalia.

Uganda and Burundi are the only countries that have contributed peacekeepers to the African Union Mission in Somalia.
Djibouti, Sierra Leon and Guinea have each promised to send a battalion to reinforce Burundi and Uganda.
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