, NAIROBI, Kenya, May 2 – President Uhuru Kenyatta has exuded confidence that closer partnership between Kenya and Somalia will enable the two countries overcome terrorism and other challenges facing them.
The President said he is particularly keen to see more coordination between the two countries in promoting peace.
“I want to assure President Mohamed (Abdullahi) that he has a friend here. I like his approach of prioritising security and we will work together in this,” said President Kenyatta, who spoke Tuesday at State House, Nairobi, when he bade farewell to outgoing Somali Ambassador Gamal Mohamed Hassan.
Ambassador Hassan has been appointed a Minister in the new Federal Government.
President Kenyatta said he was also keen to work with his Somali counterpart in encouraging formal trade between Kenya and Somalia.
“I look forward to opening one border post – either at Liboi or Mandera – with President Mohamed to encourage the people of our two countries to do legal trade,” President Kenyatta said.
“We need to work together to formalize the cross-border movement of our people,” he added.
He said the two countries will be holding regular high-level meetings to enhance their cooperation, saying “Somalia’s problem is our also our problem”.
Ambassador Hassan thanked President Kenyatta and the people of Kenya for making his tour of duty successful.