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International partners on Wednesday welcomed a deal reached by a technical committee appointed by both government and federal member states on the election impasse.

The 14-member team which had a meeting in Baidoa in South West state announced Tuesday evening that all the contentious issues had been resolved but did not provide details on how they will be or have been resolved. According to the committee, three contentious issues are the appointments of the Federal Indirect Elections Team (FIET), Somaliland elections Team and the Gedo region.

The committee thus called for a meeting of President Mohamed Farmaajo and five leaders of the federal member states Thursday to finalize the deal to pave way for the national elections. In a statement issued in Mogadishu, the international partners said they welcomed the announcement that the committee has identified technical solutions to issues that have delayed implementation of the Sept. 17, 2020 electoral model, and that these have been submitted to the National Consultative Council. “The partners further welcome the technical committee’s call for the Federal Government and Federal Member State leaders to meet on 18 February, and urge these leaders to do so in order to conclude the Committee’s work, so that the elections can be organized as a matter of priority,” the partners said.

Failure to resolve the electoral impasse has plunged Somalia into a political crisis since President Farmaajo’s term ended on Feb. 8 while the four-year term of parliament ended on Dec. 27, 2020.A consultative meeting called by Farmaajo Monday to break the deadlock failed to kick off after Jubbaland and Puntland objected to the decision to hold the meeting in Garowe and instead proposed Mogadishu to ensure participation of stakeholders and the international partners.

Somalia on Dec. 1, 2020 missed a deadline to hold its parliamentary elections which were due to begin as agreed by the government and six regional states in September 2020. Parliamentary and presidential elections were to be held between December 2020 and February 2021, respectively.

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