Mogadishu: The president of Turkey Recep Tayyip Erdogan was officially announced that he will soon visit Somalia, the first time ever he visits Somalia when in his current position as the ceremonial persident of Turkey, with some more powers above what ceremonial president is in other countries.
According to Turkish senior government officials, President Erdogan is expected to pay a visit to Somalia in this year of 2015. Once in Somalia, President Erdogan is expected to meet with the president of the federal republic of Somalia, Hassan Sheikh Mohamud when they will have discussion on how to strengthen the cooperation between Somalia and Turkey.
Aid workers and volunteers from Turkey are working in Somalia especially in Mogadishu. They play a major role in the rebuilding of Somalia as the country emerges from more than two decades of civil unrest. The journey of President Erdogan will also take him to more than ten other African countries including Tanzania, Ethiopia, among others.
It is worth mentioning that the current president of Turkey Recep Tayyip Erdogan visited Somalia at the height of the drought in Somalia in 2011, a time he was serving as the prime minister of Turkey.
During the drought of 2011, Erdoğan’s administration contributed over $201 million to humanitarian relief efforts in the impacted parts of Somalia. Following a greatly improved security situation in Mogadishu in mid-2011, the Turkish government also re-opened its foreign embassy with the intention of more effectively assisting in the post-conflict development process. It was among the first foreign administrations to resume formal diplomatic relations with Somalia after the civil war.
Additionally, Turkish Airlines became the first long-distance international commercial airline in two decades to land at Mogadishu’s Aden Adde International Airport. As of March 2012, the flag carrier offers two flights a week from the Somali capital to Istanbul.
In partnership with the Somali government, Turkish officials have also launched various development and infrastructure projects in Somalia. They have assisted in the building of several hospitals, and helped renovate and rehabilitate the Aden Adde International Airport and the National Assembly building, among other initiatives.