President Kenyatta and his Somali counterpart Hassan Sheikh Mohamed on Sunday agreed to fight terrorism until the Horn of Africa nation was free of security threats.
The two Presidents who met at State House, Mombasa, observed that terrorism and Al-Shabaab threats remained the greatest impediment to the progress of Somalia and the region.
“All of us in the region and the international community should focus on fighting the terrorist group to secure Somalia’s and the region’s unity,” President Kenyatta said.
The Heads of State also called on the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (Igad) to hasten the restoration of social and economic stability in Somalia.
“Igad should focus on providing technical assistance to the Federal Republic of Somalia in implementing the stabilisation process,” President Kenyatta said but noted that the people of Somalia must lead the process.
Addressing the public after the closed-door meeting, the Kenyan Head of State said his government was committed to assist Somalia realise development and peace.
President Mohamed thanked Kenya for sending her forces to fight the Al-Shabaab terrorists in Somalia, saying this contributed immensely to his country’s and the region’s peace and prosperity.
In calling for support from friends and neighbours, Mr Mohammed said: “We must all stand firm to fight Al-Shabaab, terrorism and extremism and to defeat them and prevent the spread of their militant ideology in this region.”
He commended the cordial bilateral relationship between the two states and promised to continue working more closely with Kenya which is “more than a neighbour”.
Realise the dream
The Somali leader urged Igad to support Somalia put its dark past behind and revive its structures and the functionality of its government institutions to enable her people realise their dream of a peaceful nation.
On the issue of thousands of Somali refugees living in Kenya, President Kenyatta promised that the government would aid their repatriation as soon as the conditions were right back home.