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Somalia / SRSG Outraged Over Suicide Attack in National Theatre

By United Nations Political Office for Somalia (UNPOS)
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MOGADISHU, Somalia, April 4, 2012/African Press Organization (APO)/ -- The UN Special Representative of the Secretary-General, Dr. Augustine P. Mahiga expressed his outrage at the suicide attack at Mogadishu's National Theatre during a celebratory ceremony today, which reportedly killed at least six people and injured scores more.

“The reopening of the National Theater is symbolic of the real change that is happening in Somalia: the city is being rebuilt, culture is being revived and hope is being restored,” he said. Speaking from Istanbul, where he was meeting with Turkish officials in support of key upcoming events in Somalia, he expressed his sadness at the loss of life and trauma inflicted on the Somali people.

“My heart goes out to the families of those killed today and the tragedy they have suffered,” said Dr. Mahiga. He reiterated his call to Al-Shabaab, which claimed responsibility, to end these acts of violence that cause great suffering to ordinary Somali civilians and completely disregard the value of human life.

He called on the Somali leaders and the Somali people to reaffirm their resolve and not to abandon the course of peace and reconciliation. “We must not let this tragic event derail the progress that is being made in Somalia” he said, noting there were significant milestones in the Somali political process on the horizon such as the adoption of a new constitution in May and the transition to a new government in August. “Somalia's future cannot be held hostage to a violent minority who resort to cowardly terrorist acts that target their fellow citizens.”