Remarks at a Meeting of the Third Committee on a Briefing by the Independent Expert on Somalia

Gregory McElwain
U.S. Mission to the United Nations
New York City
October 24, 2018


Welcome, Independent Expert Nyanduga, and thank you for your continued interest in the human rights situation in Somalia.

The recent attacks in Baidoa and the one-year anniversary of the Mogadishu truck bombing are stark reminders of Somalia’s considerable security challenges. The country’s ability to address these challenges will be enhanced by effective leadership from the federal and member state governments, strong democratic institutions, and government efforts to eliminate corruption and build citizens’ confidence as Somalia looks towards national elections in 2020 or 2021.

Somalia is continuing to make progress eliminating the unlawful use and recruitment of child soldiers; we urge additional actions to completely end their unlawful recruitment and use in Somalia’s national forces and the forces of allied militia.

We share your concerns expressed in May over reports that journalists continue to be harassed, intimidated and detained without trial. As Somalia prepares for its first ever “one-person one-vote” elections, it is all the more important that those in Somalia enjoy both the right to freely express their views and the ability to be fully informed.

IE Nyanduga, how prepared is the government at the current time to institute the planned one-person one-vote elections and where do you see your role, as well as NGOs and other outside experts, in creating an atmosphere where Somalis will see the process as free, fair, and transparent?