Somalia joins Cotonou Agreement

June 09, 2013

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The ministerial meeting of the European Union and more than 70 countries in the African, Caribbean and Pacific Group of States (ACP) approved Somalia's request to join the Cotonou Agreement on Friday (June 7th).

"The decision in relation to Somalia's accession opens a new chapter in relations between the EU and Somalia and constitutes a visible sign that Somalia has regained its status as a fully-fledged member of the international community," Ireland's Minister of State for Trade and Development Joe Costello said after the decision, made during a meeting in Brussels, according to UN-funded Radio Bar-Kulan.

The Cotonou Agreement aims to reduce and eventually eradicate poverty while contributing to sustainable development in ACP countries. It seeks greater involvement of ACP countries in planning of national development strategies to integrate least-developed countries into the world economy. It is also concerned with the promotion of criminal justice and respect for human rights through the International Criminal Court.

"Somalia will benefit greatly from this," said Somali Ambassador to the European Union Nur Adde. "After 20 years, Somalia is back to the EU-ACP family as a full member. This accession will open for Somalia a new avenue, a new opportunity of the Somali people."

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