- The UN Security Council has adopted a resolution allowing countries to chase pirates at sea and on land in Somalia and to layout additional measures to bring the pirates to justice. It is the fourth resolution approved by the council since June, to combat piracy off Somalia coast.
The UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said though there is commitment to root out piracy in Somali waters, the issues of peace and security should not be divorced from the general security operation.
Somalia, one of the world's busy routes, has the most dangerous waters in the world with more than 100 ships having been seized by pirates for ransom in the Gulf of Aden since the beginning of the year.
"We must be mindful that piracy is a symptom of the state of anarchy which has persisted in that country for over 17 years," Mr Ban told the Security Council.
He said anti-piracy efforts must be placed in the context of a comprehensive approach which fosters an inclusive peace process in Somalia and assist the leadership to rebuild security, governance capacity, address human rights issues and harness economic opportunities.
He and reminded the Council that full withdrawal of Ethiopian troops would have dire consequences for civilians including the unstable government, urging the African Union to strengthen its mission in the country.
In November, Ethiopian government announced the withdrawal of its 3,000 troops in Somalia saying it was costly for the country to manage troops in foreign country, while the Somali Transitional government had shown no commitment to peace process.
The UN Secretary General said if the AU mission in Somalia could prove to be a success, it would pave way for deploying UN peacekeepers.
The split between President Abdullahi Yusuf and Prime Minister Nur Hassan Hussein has been blamed for sluggish peace process in Somalia. Last Sunday President Yusuf sacked Mr Hussein on accusation of corruption.
Somalia has been without an effective central government for nearly two decades and has become a hub for pirates who seize ships for ransom in the Gulf of Aden.
The government has also been battling Islamic insurgency over two year involving Ethiopian backed government troops, a conflict that has killed thousands, forcing millions to flee their homes.
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