Somalia, Qatar discuss ties on sidelines of UK meet

London: Somalia President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed and Qatar’s Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani discussed bilateral relations on the sidelines of an international conference being held in London on Thursday in support of Somalia.

During the meeting, the two discussed means of achieving sustainable development in Somalia along with a number of issues of mutual interest.

The Qatari Foreign Minister reiterated his country’s commitment to supporting the Somali people in countering the challenges they face and their efforts towards building a stable state and achieving sustainable development.

The one-day conference in London seeks to accelerate progress on security, development and economy of the troubled east African country by 2020.

The meeting will be co-chaired by the Somalia President, United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres and British Prime Minister Theresa May.

Forty delegations from countries and international institutions such as the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund and the League of Arab States are set to participate.

The gathering will focus on stimulating growth in one of the world’s poorest countries and securing a path towards debt relief.

According to reports, the meeting was timely as drought, piracy and militant Islamist group Shabaab were all reappearing on the radar.

The UN said last week that Somalia, hit by drought and on the verge of famine, will count 1.4 million acutely malnourished children by the end of the year — up 50 per cent from late 2016.