UN top envoy ordered to leave Somalia for interfering
Updated 19:14, 05-Jan-2019
The Somali government declared on Tuesday that the United Nations special envoy is not welcome in the nation and has ordered the UN top envoy to leave, according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation of Somalia.
"The Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for Somalia, Nicholas Haysom, is no longer welcome in Somalia and cannot operate in the country," the foreign ministry said in a statement late Tuesday.
Haysom was accused of "violating protocols" and "deliberately interfering" in the internal affairs of the Horn of Africa country.
There was no immediate reaction from the UN mission in Somalia.
The order comes days after Haysom raised concerns at the action of Somalia's UN-backed security services in recent clashes with demonstrators contesting the arrest of former al-Shabab deputy leader Mukhtar Robow in the southern city of Baidoa last month, leaving 15 people dead and 300 people arrested.
In his letter, Haysom demanded answers from the government about the legal basis for arresting Robow, who was the main challenger in the South West State elections for the regional presidency. He also called for investigations into the deaths in the demonstration last month.
The UN mission in Somalia is tasked with supporting peace efforts and the strengthening of government institutions in the Horn of Africa nation, which was left ruined by decades of civil war. As part of that, the UN supports police officers, such as through stipend salary payments, logistics, uniforms and training.
Haysom, a South African lawyer and experienced diplomat who was previously the UN special envoy to Sudan and South Sudan, was appointed to the post in Somalia in September 2018.
(Top photo: Nicholas Haysom, the Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General for Somalia. /VCG Photo)
(With input from Xinhua and AFP)