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Somalia Names First Female Foreign Minister

By Jack Phillips
Epoch Times Staff
Created: November 5, 2012 Last Updated: November 5, 2012
Related articles: World » Africa
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New Somali Foreign Minister Fowsiyo Yusuf Haji Adan (R) and New Developing Public Service Minister Maryan Qasim Ahmed (L) smile on Nov. 4, after Prime Minister Abdi Farah Shirdon Said announced the members of his new government in Mogadishu. (Mohamed Abdiwahab/AFP/Getty Images)

New Somali Foreign Minister Fowsiyo Yusuf Haji Adan (R) and New Developing Public Service Minister Maryan Qasim Ahmed (L) smile on Nov. 4, after Prime Minister Abdi Farah Shirdon Said announced the members of his new government in Mogadishu. (Mohamed Abdiwahab/AFP/Getty Images)

The Somali government named the first female foreign minister since the war-torn country’s history began.

“After long talks and negotiations, I have formed a government of 10 ministers, one of whom is a woman who will be Somalia’s first female foreign minister,” Prime Minister Abdi Farah Shirdon Saaid said, according to Al-Arabiya television. The foreign minister will be Fowsiyo Yusuf Haji Adan, who is originally from the semi-autonomous state of Somaliland and lived in the U.K. for some time.

“This is a triumph for Somalia and Somali women. It heralds a new page in politics,” Adan said, adding that naming a woman to a high-level position in the Somali government is a sign that things in the country are improving after two decades of instability and strife.

“It turns a new page for the political situation of our country and will lead to success and prosperity,” she said, according to Al-Jazeera.

Another woman, Mariam Qassim Ahmed, was named head of development and social affairs in the Cabinet.

The naming of the Cabinet marks the end of the rule of the Western-backed transitional government, which was plagued by corruption.

Shirdon’s Cabinet will have to be approved by the Somali Parliament.

Somalia’s instability and civil war was triggered after warlords overthrew longtime dictator Mohamed Siad Barre in 1991 and the country has been without a stable government since then.

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