Ethiopia, in collaboration with other countries in the region, has been a key player in the fight against the group to maintain peace and security in Somalia.
In an exclusive interview with the Ethiopian News Agency, Ambassador Warfa lauded Ethiopia for its contribution in the fight against militant Al-Shabaab by paying huge sacrifices.
“The Ethiopian government has mobilized its forces to combat terrorism and stand alongside Somalia in the fight against the terrorists who have been trying to destabilize the region.”
The ambassador further explained the existing cooperation between Ethiopia and Somalia in various fields, including economic and education.
According to him, bilateral relations between Ethiopia and Somalia are witnessing remarkable development and sustainable partnership.
“The economic relations are witnessing remarkable development and a sustainable partnership between the two countries, with the skillful leadership of the two countries aiming to strengthen ties and cooperation in the political, economic and security fields, which makes the two countries more cohesive and closer.”
There are various areas of cooperation between the two countries, the most important of which is security, trade, cultural and economic cooperation, Ambassador Warfa noted.
The ambassador pointed out that the memorandums of understanding in areas of economic and security cooperation which were signed in Mogadishu last September between the two countries through the high-level ministerial committee are a clear indication of the desire to strengthen relations between Ethiopia and Somalia.
The trade balance between the countries has reached approximately 4 million US dollars last year. Ethiopian exports included dairy products and commodities such as vegetables and livestock, while Somalia exported fisheries, it was learned.
Moreover, Ethiopia is providing educational support for Somalia in addition to the economic cooperation, the ambassador said.
Stressing the need for strong solidarity among the countries in the region to fight Al-Shabaab and other terrorist groups that have been exporting terroristic activities in all neighboring regions, Ambassador Warfa urged all the pertinent actors in the region to intensify efforts to combat and eliminate the terrorist movement in the region.
“The terrorist Al-Shabaab is dangerous to national security of all countries in Africa, and East Africa in particular. We must join hands to fight this terrorist group and completely annihilate it from the Horn of Africa and East Africa,” he said, adding that “the group does not have a specific geography, but rather extends its terrorist activities in all neighboring regions of Somalia, Ethiopia, Kenya, Uganda, etc.”
According to the ambassador, the Government of Somalia has also been carrying out large-scale operations to fight the group, in collaboration with countries in the region.
“Efforts are (also) underway to weaken this group by drying up its financial sources,” he revealed.
Ambassador Warfa finally praised the role played by African governments in supporting the stability of Somalia in order to help the nation take up its place in continental and international arenas.