Masthead graphic based on a painting by Gudrun Thriemer.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Aweys Osman Yusuf, "Somalia: Country and Ethiopia Will Use One Passport, Somali Minister Says," Shabelle Media Network (Mogadishu), January 2, 2006.

Somalia's internal affairs minister and assistant prime Minster, Hussein Mohammed Farah Aideed, who has convened with tribal elders at former presidential house (Villa Somalia) in Mogadishu, said his government intends to wipe out the boundaries between Somalia and Ethiopia.

He said 60% of 2 millions Somali refugees live in Ethiopia and use Ethiopian passports. "Ethiopia and Somalia have 2,000 kilometers between them. The two Shabelle and Jubba rivers in Somalia come from Ethiopia. Now we need to eliminate the boundaries between us because we are brothers, and we will use one passport", he said.

He said Ethiopia was the only country that was determined to set up a state in Somalia after more than years of without government. "No country in the world cared about Somalia", he said.

He urged tribal leaders to support the government and the Ethiopian troops in the country.

Aideed, the son of a former warlord Gen. Mohammed Farah Aideed, has also indicated that the government will completely move to the capital Mogadishu.

The minister's remarks came as Prime Minister Ali Mohammed Gedi officially announced that the country's airport and seaport were open starting Wednesday in a press conference he held in his house, north of Mogadishu.

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