Somali leaders welcome ruling on boundary dispute with Kenya

Somali leaders have welcomed the ruling by International Court of Justice (ICJ) concerning a dispute with Kenya on the maritime delimitation within the Indian Ocean.

Somali President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud and Prime Minister Omar Abdirashid Ali Sharmarke said in separate statements issued on Thursday night that the Court’s verdict was fair and just as it would protect the country’s sovereignty and its natural resources.

“The government and the Somali people welcome the Court’s fair and just decision and are proud to protect the sovereignty and sovereign rights of Somalia’s maritime zones and the natural resources it holds,” Mohamud said in the statement.

He said the government strongly believes in the strength of its legal case and looks forward to a fair and just final decision from the Court on the merits of its case.

He said the Somali and the Kenyan people share strong cultural and historical ties that cannot be severed or affected by any disagreements among them.

“Somali and the Kenyan people’s destiny and future are indissolubly interconnected. Hence, the government is committed to continuing to work hard in close cooperation with its brothers and sisters in Kenya to address the pressing issues confronting both nations and the region,” he added.

The ICJ, the principal judicial organ of the United Nations, on Thursday issued a verdict, admitting an application submitted by Somalia, over the maritime delimitation between it and Kenya in the Indian Ocean.

In its final judgment and without appeal, the Court rejected objections raised by Kenya which referred to a Memorandum of Understanding and the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea, and found that it has jurisdiction to entertain Somalia’s application and that the application is admissible.


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