Somali Government welcomes the UNSC’ decision to delist Atom from the 1844 Sanctions list

The Federal Government of Somalia (FGS) welcomes the United Nations Security Council’s (UN SC) decision to de-list the former Al-Shabaab leader who has renounced violence and embraced the peace process, Sheikh Mohamed Said “Atom”, from the 1844 Sanctions list.

H.E. Mustafa Duhulow, the out-going Minister of Information held press conference today in Mogadisu and said: “The FGS welcomes UN SC’s decision to de-list Sheikh Atom from the 1844 Sanctions list. The FGS negotiated with both UN and the various member states to achieve the de-listing of an individual who renounces violence and all affiliation with al-Shabaab and other similar terrorist organizations.

This is a major achievement for not only the individual but also for any others who want to renounce violence and join the peace process. This is the universally recognized way to peace.”

The FGS understands that many Somalis fell in with al-Shabaab for financial and other desperate reasons when they felt there was nothing else to offer. But now the FGS has something to offer. Anyone who is willing to denounce violence and join the peace process is welcome. We guarantee this.

H.E. Hassan Sheikh Mohamud, the President of Somalia has offered amnesty to citizens that are willing to renounce violence and are ready to join the peace building of the nation. Sheikh Atom has chosen a peaceful path and now we can all see the peace dividend: he is now a free man. Atom has already committed to the advance of the peace process and wants to be a role model for other disaffected members of Al-Shabaab who are willing to give up their weapons and who are ready to renounce violence. He says himself, ‘Peace is now my path.

The President of Somalia praised Sheikh Atom’s expressed commitment to help Somali society and, in particular, the young people of Somalia.

The FGS also offered its thanks to the international community for their support in accepting the FGS request to delist a Somali citizen.

This willingness to engage actively in Somali peace negotiations is fundamental to the future peace in Somalia.

The FGS extends the hand of peace to all those individuals who are willing to denounce violence. Every citizen has the responsibility of participation in the rebuilding of the nation. No one can achieve their aims and objectives through violence. Violence breeds violence:

this is not and cannot be a lasting solution to Somalia’s many challenges. We want our young people to be useful, functional citizens of their country, and we want to provide them alternative opportunities such as jobs, education and vocational training and to empower them to take part in the decision making process.

The Minister of Information concluded: “The FGS will continue to support individuals who choose the path of peace over the path of violence. I know many people find this hard to reconcile, but if a Somali is willing to acknowledge his crimes, there must be room for us

to reconcile with that man and others like him. The only other option is indefinite chaos. Somalia is for Somalis and to anyone who wants to take part the rebuilding of the nation: the FGS hugely welcomes you.

Islam is the religion of peace and we all need to promote the peacefulness of our beautiful religion.”

ENDS

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