President Yoweri Museveni has congratulated the president of Somalia and assured him of continued support in the struggle for self-determination.
The president’s remarks were contained in a message to the government of Somalia on July 1-the official Independence Day.
“I would like to wish His Excellency Hassan Sheikh Mohamud, his Government and the people of Somalia, a happy Independence day,” reads the message.
Museveni told Mahamud that Uganda’s support to Somalia is unwavering as it continues its journey to self-determination and stability as a united people.
“We are helping our Somali brothers get rid of these narrow-minded attackers. The Somali people do not support the extremists, they are on the side of our soldiers,” Museveni recently told Germany media in an interview.
Museveni said Uganda if the Europeans believe they can afford to be less committed in Somalia, “we can deal with it ourselves. The Islamists had control over territory that was about half the size of the Federal Republic of Germany”.
“For years, we have been putting the lives of our troops on the line, we have taken huge losses and the Europeans cut the budget? If money is more important than the lives of our children, what else is this than the usual arrogance and superficiality? And where is all this terror coming from? It is a result of mistakes the West committed in Pakistan and Afghanistan in the 1980s, when they armed the Islamic rebels against the Soviet troops. Extremism in Somalia is causally associated with these events.”
Obama sends message
Meanwhile, John Kerry, the Secretary of State, on behalf of President Obama and the American people, congratulated the people and government of Somalia on their 56th Independence Day on July 1.
He said the United States supports Somalia as it continues its progress towards building a stable, federal democracy.
“We remain confident that this year’s electoral process will be another step forward on Somalia’s path to democracy, security, and prosperity.”
Kerry said United States was pleased to welcome the formal reopening of the Somali embassy in Washington, D.C. last November.
“We are equally pleased to be sending our first U.S. ambassador to Somalia in 25 years.”
“As I mentioned during my visit to Mogadishu last May, Somalis are a resilient people. On this day of celebration, I wish all Somalis peace and joy.”