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Clinton vows to boost aid for Somalia

[ 2009-08-07 13:21]     字号 [] [] []  
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US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton pledged strong support for Somalia's fragile government yesterday and vowed to take action against Eritrea if it did not stop "unacceptable" interference in the country.

Clinton held talks in Kenya with Somali President Sheikh Sharif Ahmed, whose administration is battling hard-line Islamist militants, including the Al-Shabab insurgent group.

Accusing the extremists of trying to turn Somalia into a base to launch worldwide terrorist attacks, Clinton said the Obama administration would boost military supplies and other aid to the government and to an African peacekeeping force supporting it. She did not give details of the new aid.

"President Obama and I want to expand and extend our support for the transitional federal government," she said at a joint news conference alongside Ahmed.

Australian police said this week that they had uncovered a plot to attack an army base by men who they said had links to Al-Shabab, which Washington says is Al-Qaida's proxy in Somalia.

Al-Shabab yesterday denied any connection to the terror plot in Australia.

"We have nothing to do with that and we believe it is meant to blackmail the (detained) youths into spying for the enemies of Islam," Sheikh Ali Mohamoud Rageh, spokesman for Al-Shabab, told reporters in Mogadishu.

Clinton said the presence of "terrorist elements" in the turbulent country posed a threat to Africa and beyond - and she warned neighboring Eritrea to stop meddling in Somali affairs.

"It is long past time for Eritrea to cease and desist its support for Al-Shabab," she said, "and to start being a productive, rather than a destabilizing, factor."

Eritrea routinely denies allegations of supporting rebels in Somalia.

Clinton said Washington had given $150 million to Somalia during the past two years, including more than 40 tons of weapons and ammunition.

Her talks with Ahmed also covered an increase in piracy in Somalia's coastal waters - vital shipping lanes linking Asia and Europe. Pirates are expected to step up attacks as the end of the monsoon season brings better weather.

Before meeting Ahmed, Clinton laid a wreath at the site of the US embassy bombing in Nairobi in 1998.

She also met survivors of the blast that killed 218 people, and said visiting the memorial was an opportunity to renew US resolve to fight terrorism.


1. Who did Secretary of State Hillary Clinton meet with in Kenya?

2. What did Secretary of State Hillary Clinton say the United States would do to help Somolia?

3. What did she accuse the country of Eretria of?


1. Somali President Sheikh Sharif Ahmed

2. Clinton said the United States would “boost military supplies and other aid to the government and to an African peacekeeping force supporting it.”

3. Supporting the Islamic terrorist group Al-Shabab in Somolia

(英语点津 Helen 编辑)

Clinton vows to boost aid for Somalia

About the broadcaster:

Clinton vows to boost aid for Somalia

Dan Chinoy is a reporter and editor for the China Daily's website. A graduate of Columbia University, he grew up in Beijing, Hong Kong, and Taiwan. Dan has experience in Hillary Clinton's Senate Office in Washington, and Fortune Magazine in Beijing, the U.S. Consulate in Shenyang. Dan speaks Chinese, but not as well as he should.