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TFG forces patrol Baidoa/ AFP


Somalia applies to join EAC bloc

TFG forces patrol Baidoa/ AFP

NAIRIOBI, Kenya, Mar 6 – The Republic of Somalia has placed an official request to be admitted to the East African Community (EAC).

The request was made on Tuesday in a letter to President Mwai Kibaki, who is the current chairman of the EAC.

The letter was delivered to Foreign Affairs Minister Moses Wetangula by Ambassador Abdi Hakim Ali Yasin, the special envoy of Somalia’s Transitional Federal Government (TFG) President Sheikh Shariff.

Receiving the letter, Wetangula assured the people of Somalia that the request would be considered by the necessary EAC organs and forwarded to the EAC Summit during its next meeting.

The request follows major developments in Somalia that have seen the country begin the journey to stability and peace after several years of civil strife.

Somalia has been ravaged by a relentless conflict since 1991, and a lack of effective central authority has allowed pirate gangs, extremist militia and other armed groups to control mini-fiefdoms.

The international community last month launched a new attempt to restore stability in the anarchic country at a meeting with Somali leaders in London.

The East African Community comprises Burundi, Kenya, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda which entered a common market in 2010.

The EAC is currently working to form a monetary union by 2012 and, ultimately, a political federation.

(Agence France Presse contributed to this report)

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