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Row between Somalia's president, premier deepens over new security minister

MOGADISHU, SOMALIA - SEPTEMBER 23: Newly appointed Mohamed Hussein Roble (2nd L) endorsed by all 215 members of parliament during a vote of confidence session attended by Somalian President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmaajo (not seen) in the capital Mogadishu, Somalia on September 23, 2020. Somali lawmakers on Wednesday approved Mohamed Hussein Roble as the country's new prime minister in a landslide vote. ( Sadak Mohamed - Anadolu Agency )
Somalia’s President Mohamed Farmaajo in Mogadishu, Somalia on 23 September 2020 [Sadak Mohamed/Anadolu Agency]

A power struggle between Somalia's President Mohamed Farmaajo and Prime Minister Mohamed Roble escalated further as the country's new security minister, Abdullahi Mohamed Nur, took office Thursday, Anadolu Agency reports.

The development came after Roble fired internal security minister Hassan Hundubey Jimale on Wednesday in order to "revitalise" the ministry.

Like the president, Somalia's Speaker of Parliament Mohamed Mursal Abdirahman termed the appointment unconstitutional, saying the swearing-in of the new security minister is unconstitutional as Roble did not get parliament's approval.

The escalating rift between the top political leaders has caught the attention of foreign missions amid heightened political tensions in the country.

Foreign missions and the UN in a joint statement Wednesday called on the two leaders to resolve their differences, saying the rift could derail the ongoing election process.

"We urge Somali leaders to de-escalate the political confrontation surrounding this investigation and, in particular, avoid any actions that could lead to violence," said the statement in part.

READ: Suicide attack in Somali capital kills at least 2

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