Mogadishu, May 9 – The EU marked Europe Day in Mogadishu together with Somali and International Partners. This year’s Europe Day celebrations coincide with the 60th anniversary of the Rome Treaties that laid the foundations for the European Union of today.
This year, the EU is also celebrating the 30th Anniversary of the ERASMUS student exchange program, considered one of the most successful EU programmes. Several Somali students have received scholarships under the ERASMUS Mundus programme for post-graduate students from outside Europe.
The EU, with its Member States, is Somalia’s main partner and provides more than half of all assistance to the country. The European Union has stood with the Somali people through the past decades.
On 8 May, EU Ambassador Veronique Lorenzo and Prime Minister Hassan Khayre discussed maritime security on board the EUNAVFOR ATALANTA flagship, ESPS Galicia. EUNAVFOR is the European Counter-Piracy Mission. The Heads of the EUCAP Maritime Security Mission for Somalia, the EU Training Mission and the Operations and Force Commanders of EUNAVFOR joined the EU ambassador for the discussions.
House of the People Speaker, and acting President, Mohamed Osman Jawari graced the Europe Day reception on 9 May as the Chief Guest. At the event, the EU family showcased the support it provides to Somalia.
“I am delighted that having these celebrations in Mogadishu is now becoming a tradition – it is a testimony to the growing bond between the EU and the Somali people and to the fact that Somalia has come a long way on its path to normalization. The European Union is and will continue to be a strong, cooperative and reliable partner,” Ambassador Lorenzo said.
As a sign of EU’s continued commitment to supporting Somallia, Ambassador Veronique Lorenzo, Somali Minister for Planning Gamal Hassan, and State Minister for Education Abdirahman Mohamed Abdule, signed an agreed to further expand the support the EU is providing to the education sector with an additional € 49 million.
Since 2008 the EU has invested over € 2.5 Billion in development, humanitarian and stabilisation support to Somalia. The EU support cuts across sectors throughout the country and includes support for security, education, state building and governance. The EU has also made massive investments in resilience and support for livelihoods.
The EU and EU Member States’ response to this year’s drought amounts to over €450 million.