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Former Somali president denied U.S. visa under Trump travel ban

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The former president of Somalia, H.E. Hassan Sheikh Mohamud has reportedly been denied a visa to the United States of America where he was scheduled to deliver a lecture on Tuesday March 27, titled ‘Somalia the Crossroads: Opportunities and Challenges post civil war’.

Mohamud who was head of state of Somalia from 2012 to 2017 was a victim of the Trump travel ban that came into force last year, according to the World Council Affairs of Maine (WCM), which had organised the lecture.

Somalia is one of three African countries whose citizens are banned from travelling to the United States.

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In a statement issued on their Facebook page, WCM said Mohamud was denied a visa under Executive Order 13769 protecting the nation from foreign terrorist entry into the United States’.

‘‘We regret to share that H.E. Hassan Sheikh Mohamud was denied visa issuance by the U.S. Consulate in Somalia under Executive Order 13769, Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry into the United States.’‘

The statement has since been deleted from the Facebook account, but the website of the organisations shows that the event has been cancelled.

Mohamud visited the U.S. several times while serving as the President of Somalia, including visits to the U.N General Assembly in New York and the White House.

His predecessor, President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo who holds dual U.S. and Somali citizenship has pledged to work towards the lifting of the travel ban.

For Mohamud, this will be the second time he is being denied a visa by a foreign country.

In February this year, he cancelled a similar invitation to address a lecture in Sweden after after the country’s Embassy in Ankara Turkey declined to stamp the visa on his Passport.

Most Scandinavian countries do not recognize the Somali Passport following the fall of the central government in 1991.

Mohamud has not yet addressed the reported denial of a visa and instead posted about the simmering tensions along the Somali Kenya border where the latter is building a wall in the Balad Hawo town, on his Facebook page on Sunday.

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PM Abiy reiterates Ethiopia’s decision over latest clampdown.

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Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed has finally spoken on ongoing anti-corruption and rights abuse clampdown stating that there was not going to be any backing down let alone retreat.

A statement from the Abiy’s office issued in Amharic tasked citizens to rally behind the development as a means of ridding the country of lawlessness and criminal elements.

State-affiliated FBC reported that the statement titled, ‘Let’s Fight (the) Cancer,’ said the government was bent on bringing people behind injustices to book.



The statement said the underlying objective of recent arrests was to get rid of Ethiopia criminals. “… criminals do not care about ethnicity, country, or morality; they only care for themselves.

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“The key to justice is to create a system for innocent citizens to live in freedom and dignity while criminals are held accountable and punished in accordance with the law,” the statement read in part.

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Since early this week, authorities have announced the arrest of over sixty former military and intelligence officials arrested in connection with rights abuse in prisons and gross corruption in the military run business conglomerate, Metals and Engineering Corporation, MetEC.

A former head of MetEC, Kinfe Dagnew; and a former intelligence chiefs, Tekleberhan Woldearegay and Yared Zerihun have all been detained and put before courts in the capital, Addis Ababa.

Head of security at the state monopoly, Ethio Telecom, Gudeta Olana, has also been arrested as has head of the entity and brother of ex-MetEC boss, Essayas Dagnew.

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New Zealand denies refusing refugees with holiday visas entry.

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New Zealand’s Prime Minister, Jacinda Ardern, on Friday, rejected allegations that the country’s government was blocking refugees who wished to travel into the country from Nauru on visitor visas.

Nauru’s president, Baron Waqa, also claimed in an interview with Australian media that he had also personally brokered a deal for New Zealand to accept 80 refugees currently located on the island.



“It’s incorrect to say that there is some kind of agreement for 80 specific individuals to take residence or visit,’’ Ardern told media at the East Asia Summit in Singapore.

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“The request did not ask about whether refugees could visit New Zealand on holiday visas,’’ he added.

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The country assessed all applications for visitor visas on a case-by-case basis. This applies regardless of a person’s country of origin or nationality.

The country is under pressure to transfer the remaining 30 children from the island.

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