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Presidential spokesman says no rift between Somali, Ethiopian leadership
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09:06, October 20, 2008

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Hussein Mohamed Hubsired, spokesman for the Somali president, has strongly denied media reports of a political rift within Somali and Ethiopian leaders over the future of the war-torn Horn of Africa nation, a press release said Sunday.

Hubsired described those reports as "political speculations," adding that only the spokesperson of the President of Somalia is authorized to speak on behalf the president.

"I would like to underline that the current leadership of Somalia and Ethiopia have come all the way to make history out of their courage and far-sighted vision by strengthening all the positive values and important interests we share as brothers and neighbors," Hubsired said in a statement.

This comes days after some local and international media reported that the Somali president, through his "special envoy," accused both his Prime Minister Nur Hassan Hussein and Ethiopian Prime Minister Meles Zenawi of being behind the failure of the Somali transitional government and its inability to tackle the insurgency in Somalia.

Hubsired said the leaders of the two countries "have paved the way for a brighter future of peace and political stability in our sub-region and far beyond."

In late 2006, the Ethiopian government sent its military into Somalia to help the Somali transitional government defeat an Islamist administration in southern and central Somalia that was deemed a threat to the national security of Ethiopia and a challenge to the authority of the internationally recognized Somali national institutions.

Hubsired urged local and international media to cover as fairly as possible Somali issues, asking them to have in mind "the tremendous sufferance of the Somali people and their utmost right for fair and lasting peace."


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