Somalia lacked stability since the collapse of its central government in 1990. A military government that ruled Somalia for 21 years led by Mohamed Siad Barre.
Numerous attempts were made to stabilize Somalia, at least 14 peace conferences, but every time new cracks appeared that plunged the country into deeper chaos and division.
London conference might be different from those attempts with its involvement of both world leaders or representatives from 55 countries and Somali political representatives.
- Political Process
- Local Stability
- International coordination
Security had been one of the biggest of all of them with Britain fearful of being affected by an export or import of terrorism from and to Somalia by British Youth. And the piracy is a world problem.
David Cameron who hosted the world leaders in London to the conference on Somalia, insisted that Somalis themselves can solve their problem.
However, the London conference agreed according to the final Communique that at the end of August, 2012, the transition must end in accordance with Transitional Federal Government’s (TFG) charter.
This itself can be argued is interfering internal affairs in Somalia.
The conference agreed in setting up a fund that will assist Somalia’s local authorities including those which will be liberated from al-Shabab control.
Hilary Clinton insisted there will be no negotiation with al-Shabab and that spoilers will be punished.
On the issue of piracy agreement had been reached to try pirates in Seychelles, Tanzania and Mauritius with convicted pirates to be imprisoned in Somaliland and Puntland.
The International community will support Somaliland and TFG or any administration that will replaced the TFG to decide their future relationship. Somaliland had been seeking international recognition after announcing its secession from other parts of Somalia.
The conference agreed also on the creation of a Joint Financial Management Board. The coming Somali government was demanded to refrain from corruption.
The international community had been accused of siding with selected groups of Somali conflict.
The US leading a multi national force in 1993 could not pacify the country.
In 2006 there was a short time peaceful period of 6 months created by the Union of Islamic Courts only to be forcefully ousted by Ethiopian troops who invaded Somalia with consent from parts of the then weak government of Somalia.
Ethiopian troops are now controlled two Somalia town deep inside the country and Kenya troops also crossed the border.
Jean Ping, African Union chairman said about 2700 AMISOM troops will replace Ethiopian troops in Baidoa town who will go back to their border. However, he did not specify any time limit.
Overall, there have been positive outcome from the Conference but it is thought it will reinforce the division within Somalia and runs the risk of creating more tribal entities that will compete with each other for power and territory.
There was mention of full support of AU troops in the country but support of rebuilding Somali army appeared minimalistic in the final communique. Creation of Somali coastal guards was not emphasize but instead trials of pirates in foreign lands and later imprisoning them in Puntland and Somaliland.
This further jeopardises any hope for final solution of Somali problems from London Conference.