Somalia rejects tempting offer from Saudi Arabia


On Sunday, different sources were quoted by a newspaper in Somalia (Somalia Today), saying that there was pressure put on the Somali government by Saudi Arabia to reverse their (Somalia) decision of staying neutral concerning the current situation of political dispute between the gulf countries (Saudi Arabia and Qatar).

Sources confirmed that, Saudi Arabia threatened to withdraw its financial aid from the Somali government, on condition that Somalia changes her neutral stand.

Somalia called for an end to the political wrangles between Qatar and other Arab nations through dialogue via Islamic Organizations like the Arab League and the Organization of Islamic Conference (OIC).

As proved by several journalists, in exchange for his decision to severe diplomatic relations with Qatar and to stay neutral, President Mohammed Abdullah Farmajo, the president of Somalia, was offered $80 million by Saudi Arabia.

“Unfortunately, it is too confirmed that after two complete hours of enticement, President Farmajo turned down the offer,” said Jaber Al-Harimi, a journalist.

“Recently, ministers of the Somali government who had traveled to Saudi Arabia for meetings with their counterparts, returned home after the meetings were unexpectedly postponed without any notice,” reported and confirmed from different sources.

On Sunday still, a Qatari delegation headed by the Minister of Foreign Affairs Sultan Bin Saad Al-Muraikhi landed in Somalia.

The delegation met with Hassan Ali Khairi, the Prime Minister of Somalia and other officials from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and is later expected to meet with the president to hold talks between the Gulf States and the Somali Federal government.

In their speech, the delegation praised and thanked the government for the brave stance taken towards the Gulf countries.

They also encouraged Somali leaders to maintain their attitude against the embargo on Qatar, as it (embargo) is not worth it.

Further with the Gulf countries’ wrangles, Qatar had been put on a no flight restriction which was imposed to it by the Arab countries.

Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt and others applied a land and air siege on Qatar over tensions on foreign policy.

However, Somalia allowed Qatar to use its airspace, to break the restriction.

“At least 15 Qatari planes flew through the Somali Airspace on the first day of the besiegement on Qatar, previously, only two aircrafts would arrive in Somalia from Qatar each day,” a Somali official with the aviation authority was reported saying.



Correspondent: Shamira Abdallah

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