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UAE and UK agree two million pounds joint funding to tackle abuse of women in Somalia

The announcement was made during the state visit by UAE President HH Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, who yesterday met with British premier David Cameron.

Thursday, May 02, 2013

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A joint funding of Dh11.6 million (2 million pounds) to help Somalia tackle the issue of sexual violence was announced by UAE Foreign Minister Shaikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan and British Foreign Minister William Hague, at the end of bilateral talks at the British Foreign and Commonwealth Office, according to a statement.

The new funding, agreed during the first state visit to the UK by the President, His Highness Shaikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, comes ahead of a major London conference on Somalia on May 7 at which tackling sexual violence will be discussed. The Preventing Sexual Violence Initiative (PSVI) is a top British priority, supported by the UAE.

The Federal Government of Somalia has publicly committed to improving the lives of women in Somalia, addressing the problem of sexual violence and combating the impunity which surrounds these terrible crimes. The two million pounds (one million each from the UK and UAE) will provide support to the Somalian government, including training and capacity-building and help for them to deliver PSVI recommendations due to be made by the UN Team of Experts when they visit Somalia this year.

Commenting on the announcement, Shaikh Abdullah said: “The UAE applauds the UK’s strong leadership in bringing countries together to tackle the unacceptable prevalence of sexual violence in conflict situations. Through this contribution, the UAE is delighted to be able to support the Somali government in its efforts to protect and empower women.”

British Foreign Secretary William Hague said: “Women and girls in Somalia have suffered acutely from sexual violence as a result of the conflict. I am pleased that through the UK’s close partnership with the UAE we can go some way to supporting the Federal Government of Somalia’s efforts to address this issue and improve the lives of women and girls.”

Source: Khaleej Times

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