The government of Somalia and its foreign backers on Thursday signed a security pact aimed at building a functional national force capable of fighting Al-Shabaab militants.
Though Al–shaabab has immensely lost its control of its territories in Somalia, including the capital Mogadishu, its constant attacks remain one of the main challenges to stability in Somalia.
At the London conference on Somalia, world powers agreed to support and train Somalia’s army and police in order to take up duties performed by the African Union.
The United Nation secretary general Antonio Guterres however said combating drought was the most pressing priority.
The East African region is facing one of the worst droughts in the recent past. Millions are facing starvation and thousands of lives hang in the bala…
He said UN was increasing its appeal for the country by $900 million to a total of $1.6 billion to allow aid agencies to deal with the severe drought that has caused a humanitarian crisis.
The UN chief said the extra funding was needed as more than 6 million Somalis needed assistance. 275,000 children were said to be malnourished and were at risk of starvation.
He added that the conference at Lancaster House, attended by more than 40 nations, had created an opportunity to take Somalia out of "decades of conflict, of poverty and of terrible suffering."
The pact, a 17-page document released at the end of the conference follows a detailed agreement reached between Somalia’s federal government and its member states on how to unify their disparate forces into a national army and police force.
Somalia's President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed, who took office at the start of the year in February, has hailed the pact as "historic" for his country.