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Newsline: Mogadishu gets first US ambassador in over 25 years

The relationship between the United States and Somalia has switched into top gear following the arrival of the first American Ambassador to Somalia in over 25 years. Relations between the two countries collapsed in 1991 after the US closed its embassy following the overthrow of Mohamed Said Barre’s regime as violence erupted between warring clans and militias. In 1992 George H W Bush sent US troops into the capital Mogadishu to support a UN mission to avert mass starvation. However, the shooting down of an American Black Hawk helicopter and the killing of 18 American soldiers, with some of their bodies mutilated and dragged through the streets of the capital by rebels, marked the nadir in the relationship between the two countries, culminating in the withdrawal of US troops the following year. On Tuesday, US Ambassador Stephen Schwartz, met with Somali Foreign Affairs Minister Abdisalam Omar Hadliye and presented his credentials to the Somali government.



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