Can International Support Fix the Somalia Problem?
Abdiweli Mohamed Ali, head of the transitional government in Somalia, shakes hands with Prime Minister David Cameron as UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon looks on after a press conference in London on February 23. Cameron hosted the one-day conference on Somalia with UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon, U.S. Secretary Of State Hilary Clinton and representatives from 40 governments. (WPA Pool/Getty Images)
February 29, 2012
| Security
| Africa
The international community is rallying around Somalia in an attempt to bring an end to chronic instability, famine, and violence at the hands of al-Shabaab militants in East Africa’s most volatile nation. Beneath a flurry of foreign military support, humanitarian aid, and financial programs, however, lies a nation as feeble and divided as ever. The international community may be ready to declare victory over the militants, but Somalia appears far from it.
The spotlight was on February 23 when more than 50 delegates from nations around the world met in London to discuss forging a path to stability and security in the war-torn nation. During the conference, which was hosted by British Prime Minister David Cameron, delegates agreed to increase humanitarian aid and bolster security with more African Union peacekeeping troops, according to the Wall Street Journal. The meeting also resulted in the creation of the Joint Financial Management Board: an oversight committee composed of Somalis and members of the international community charged with fostering “accountability and transparency” in the use of public and donor funds. The conference concluded with delegates agreeing to back the ending of the Transitional Federal Government (TFG) in August. “This timetable will be stuck to,” said Cameron, according to Voice of America. “There will be no further extensions. We will hold the Somalis to this.”

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