On Monday, July 30, Somali President Mohamed Abdullahi and Eritrean President Isaias Afwerki announced in a joint statement that diplomatic relations will resume between the two countries. The announcement followed a visit by President Abdullahi to the Eritrean capital of Asmara on July 28. Promised changes include the reopening of embassies, the promotion of bilateral trade and investment, as well as educational and cultural exchanges. Furthermore, President Abdullahi called for the lifting of the UN economic sanctions and embargos on Eritrea.
The historic rapprochement is expected to put an end to 15 years of troubled relations between the two countries, during which diplomatic ties were cut. Former Somali administrations had accused Eritrea of supporting the Somalia-based Al-Shabaab terrorist organization, which Eritrea has repeatedly denied.
In December 2009, the United Nations Security Council imposed sanctions on Eritrea following the country's refusal to withdraw its troops from Ras Doumeira in Djibouti and to allow a UN fact-finding mission to enter its territory, and its alleged involvement in the conflict in Somalia.
Individuals in Somalia and Eritrea are advised to monitor developments to the local situation, to remain vigilant at all times and to avoid any form of public demonstration or public gathering due to the risk of violence. Adhere to all instructions issued by authorities and respect all laws (curfews, etc.).
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