Somalia’s Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, H.E. Ahmed Isse Awad, has said that “Africa is headed towards integration and cooperation, which will result in conflict resolution and economic benefits for the region.” The Minister made this known while speaking as a panelist during the opening of the 19th Doha Forum, with the theme: Reimagining Governance in a Multipolar World. Mr. Awad, participated in a parallel session – Unwinding Africa’s Proxy Wars – Libya and the Horn of Africa, alongside, Claudia Gazzini, Senior Libya Analysts, International Crisis Group; James Swan, Special Representative of the Secretary-General for Somalia and Head of the United Nations Assistance Mission in Somalia. 

The session which was moderated by Dr. Comfort Ero, Africa Programme Director, International Crisis Group, laid great emphasis on the political situation in Somalia and Libya, with panelists highlighting Somalia’s progress towards bringing about stability through dialogue. However, they also spoke of how external involvement remains a matter of concern, as it can be an obstacle towards achieving stability, as evidenced by Libya. 

Ms. Claudia Gazzini, Senior Libya Analyst at the International Crisis Group explained how Libya has become a hub for proxy wars, and it could take a very long time before the country was stable. She further explained that external rather than internal stakeholders are becoming increasingly relevant in the conflict resolution process. 

As Somalia plans for its first major election in 2020, analysts have maintained that maintaining peace and stability in the country and the Horn of Africa has become all the more important. 

The Doha Forum which was established in 2000, is platform global dialogue on critical challenges facing the world. The Forum was designed to promote the interchange of ideas, discourse, policymaking, and action-oriented recommendations. Founded on a three-pronged approach of Diplomacy; Dialogue and Diplomacy; the Doha Forum has become a global platform for exchanging ideas and finding solutions in a world where borders are porous, and challenges and solutions, interlinked.