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Estonia Established Diplomatic Relations With Somalia

11.05.2011

No. 165-E

Foreign Minister Urmas Paet and Deputy Somali Foreign Minister Abdiweli Mohamed Ali established diplomatic relations between Estonia and Somalia in Istanbul.

Foreign Minister Paet stated that the existence of diplomatic ties with other countries is a traditional component of international communication. “In the case of Somalia, having diplomatic ties is also essential because Estonian soldiers are participating in the European Union military operation ATALANTA in order to protect ships moving off the coast of Somalia from pirate attacks,” he added.

According to the foreign minister, Estonia is sending vessel protection units to ships sailing under the Somali flag within the framework of the ATALANTA operation. “Sending vessel protection teams requires the consent of the Somali government. Since the ATALANTA operation began, the number of hijackings off the coast of Somalia has been reduced threefold,” Paet noted. “The existence of diplomatic relations allows for direct communication with Somalia’s government and for the full participation of an Estonian unit in the ATALANTA operation,” he added.

Estonia has established diplomatic relations with 169 countries.

Photo: http://www.flickr.com/photos/estonian-foreign-ministry/5709410870/in/pho...

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