Kenya and Somaliland Governments Tuesday reaffirmed their commitment to deepen their cordial bilateral relations.
After two days of discussions, President Uhuru Kenyatta and his counterpart President Muse Bihi Abdi reiterated the commitment of the leadership of the two nations to enhance bilateral ties saying it is based on a foundation of shared values and principles aimed at fostering sustainable peace, stability, sustained growth and shared prosperity.
In this regard, the two leaders directed respective senior officials to work together to develop a general cooperation framework agreement that will among others look into, deepening existing cordial people-to-people relations; promote and diversify trade and investments; enhance security cooperation and information sharing to combat terrorism, cybercrimes and organized transnational crimes; enhance cooperation in various sectors including Agriculture, Livestock Development, Education, Energy and Transport and promote Training and capacity building.
To actualize the commitments made, the two leaders agreed that Kenya will open its Consulate in Hargeisa by end of March 2021 while Somaliland will upgrade its Liaison Office in Nairobi within the same timeframe.
Kenya Airways and other Kenyan airlines will also commence direct flights between Nairobi and Hargeisa by end of March 2021. Senior officials on a pre-determined list and travelling to Kenya on Somaliland travel documents will apply for e-visa and receive a visa on arrival by end of March 2021.
Senior officials from Kenya and Somaliland were also tasked with agreeing on details and timelines for enhancing technical cooperation, including implementation of Exchange Programmes involving Students, Agricultural Officers, Doctors, Nurses and other professionals.
The two leaders pledged to continue to work together in safeguarding peace and stability in the Horn of Africa region.
They also noted that Al-Shabaab continues to pose a significant threat to the region calling for a robust international engagement and support for efforts to combat terrorism in the Horn of Africa.
The two leaders at the same time acknowledged Kenya’s commitment to a peaceful, stable, strong and prosperous Somalia, in which the voices of all the people of Somalia have opportunity to express their sovereign will.
Abdi arrived in the country on Sunday for a three-day Official Visit.