Somalia: Farmaajo appoints Balal Osman as Special Envoy for Red Sea and Gulf of Aden

President Mohamed Farmaajo has appointed Balal Mohamed Osman as his new special envoy to the Horn of Africa, Red Sea and Gulf of Aden Affairs.

In a presidential decree dated November 11, 2019, Farmaajo appointed Osman to the newly created portfolio following the increasing strategic importance of the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden since Somalia and Eritrea restored diplomatic relations.

Prior to her appointment as the special envoy, Osman served as the President’s Foreign Policy Advisor. Osman was among the campaign team for Farmaajo’s election in 2017.

The regional bloc IGAD formed the Taskforce on the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden in April 2019 comprising of three nominees from the member states.

In its second meeting in September, the Taskforce reiterated the need for greater cooperation in harnessing opportunities and mitigating challenges in the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden.

It also agreed to work on a Plan of Action will establish a roadmap for promoting collective action towards securing the interests of the region in the two maritime spaces.

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