U.S. Senator Chris Coons (D-Del.), chair of the Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee on African Affairs, released the following statement Friday on the United States' formal recognition of the Government of Somalia for the first time since 1991:
"This week, the Obama Administration formally recognized the Government of Somalia, and I applaud this critical step in forging a new path in bilateral relations with Somalia after it has faced more than two decades of conflict and war. Over the past year, the Somali people have made significant and courageous progress in improving security and governance, and I hope our renewed diplomatic ties can help to sustain and build on those gains. While several challenges remain, I am both optimistic and hopeful about Somalia's potential. The United States will continue to work closely with President Sheikh, the Somalia government, and our international partners to help the Somali people continue on a positive trajectory toward a more stable, secure, democratic, and prosperous future."