Somali President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud took the opportunity of his attendance at the Arab League Summit in Kuwait to call upon Arab leaders to regain their unity of purpose to better address the regional challenges facing both peace and human development.

Issues of peace and civil stability were of importance for the assembled Arab leaders as they considered various resolutions on both the crisis in Syria and the Arab peace initiative.

President Mohamud said: “Arab nations need to rise to the challenges that collectively face us. We lag behind in terms of human development and we need to do much better adapting our political institutions to the twenty-first century. The old models haven’t worked. We must now demonstrate unity of purpose if we are to make the progress our people deserve.”

For Somalia, Arab countries are among its most important diplomatic and development partners as it looks to rebuild its economy and political institutions, the President said, adding that he will hold a series of bilateral meetings with Arab leaders on a range of topics.

“We will be discussing peace-building initiatives and development projects and updating our colleagues on the success we are having in our offensive against Al Shabaab,” he noted.

“After the military victory against our enemies we will be looking to find a lasting solution to the conflict and to repeat our unconditional offer to work with all Somalis who renounce violence. We are all Somalis and must join forces to rebuild our country.”