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UN posts new envoy to Mogadishu

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Mr Nicholas Kay (C), the new Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General and head of the new UN political mission in Somalia, speaks to the press following his arrival at the Aden Abdulle International Airport in Mogadishu June 3, 2013. PHOTO | AFP

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The United Nations has posted a new envoy to Somalia.

Mr Nicholas Kay arrived in Mogadishu Monday and was received by Prime Minister Abdi Farah Shirdon at Villa Somalia, the presidential palace in the city.

The Prime Minister introduced Mr Kay as the new boss in charge of the United Nations Assistance Mission in Somalia (UNSOM).

The new office will replace the United Nations Political Office for Somalia (UNPOS).

UNPOS, under the leadership of Dr Augustine Phillip Mahiga from Tanzania, ceases to exist.

Dr Mahiga and his office oversaw the installation of the new Somali government and the adoption of a provisional federal constitution in August 2012 that paved the way for the new parliament and election of a president in September.

“The Somali government will closely work with Mr Nicholas Kay,” said Mr Shirdon.

The new UNSOM boss pledged to support the government and the people of Somalia in their quest for security and prosperity.

Good governance

“I am very pleased to be in Mogadishu and to have this opportunity to support the federal government and people of Somalia to bring peace, security and prosperity back to Somalia,” said Mr Kay.

Last month, the UN Security Council unanimously voted to establish UNSOM to be based in Mogadishu for an initial period of 12 months, effective June 3.

However, Mr Kay stated that UNSOM would set up office in several Somali cities including Hargeisa, Garowe and Baidoa.

“UNSOM will support state building and peace building with a focus on good governance, security sector reform, rule of law and human rights,” he remarked.

“We look forward with hope towards a national election in 2016.”

Mr Kay had since last year, served as Africa Director at the UK's Foreign and Commonwealth Office.

Prior to that, he served as the ambassador to the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Sudan from 2007 to 2010 and 2010 to 2012, respectively.

He started his diplomatic career in Spain and Cuba.

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