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Somalia: Government

Government Somalia
Country name:
conventional long form: none
conventional short form: Somalia
former: Somali Republic, Somali Democratic Republic
Government type:
no permanent national government; transitional, parliamentary national government
Capital:
Mogadishu
Administrative divisions:
18 regions (plural - NA, singular - gobolka); Awdal, Bakool, Banaadir, Bari, Bay, Galguduud, Gedo, Hiiraan, Jubbada Dhexe, Jubbada Hoose, Mudug, Nugaal, Sanaag, Shabeellaha Dhexe, Shabeellaha Hoose, Sool, Togdheer, Woqooyi Galbeed
Independence:
1 July 1960 (from a merger of British Somaliland, which became independent from the UK on 26 June 1960, and Italian Somaliland, which became independent from the Italian-administered UN trusteeship on 1 July 1960, to form the Somali Republic)
National holiday:
Foundation of the Somali Republic, 1 July (1960); note - 26 June (1960) in Somaliland
Constitution:
25 August 1979, presidential approval 23 September 1979
note: the Transitional National Government formed in August 2000 has a mandate to create a new constitution and hold elections within three years
Legal system:
no national system; Shari'a and secular courts are in some localities
Suffrage:
18 years of age; universal
Executive branch:
chief of state: ABDIKASSIM Salad Hassan (since 26 August 2000); note - as of December 2002, there was no executive branch in southern Somalia; Interim President ABDIKASSIM was chosen for a three-year term by a 245-member National Assembly serving as a transitional government but has little power and was due to leave office in August 2003; the political situation, particularly in the south, with interclan fighting and random banditry, remains fluid
election results: ABDIKASSIM Salad Hassan was elected president of an interim government at the Djibouti-sponsored Arta Peace Conference on 26 August 2000 by a broad representation of Somali clans that comprised a transitional National Assembly
head of government: Prime Minister HASSAN Abshir Farah (since 12 November 2001)
cabinet: Cabinet appointed by the prime minister and sworn in on 20 October 2000; as of 1 January 2002, the Cabinet was in caretaker status following a no-confidence vote in October 2001 that ousted HASSAN's predecessor
Legislative branch:
unicameral National Assembly
note: fledgling parliament; a transitional 245-member National Assembly began to meet on 13 August 2000 in the town of Arta, Djibouti and is now based in Mogadishu
Judicial branch:
following the breakdown of national government, most regions have reverted to either Islamic (Shari'a) law with a provision for appeal of all sentences, or traditional clan-based arbitration
Political parties and leaders:
none
Political pressure groups and leaders:
numerous clan and subclan factions are currently vying for power
International organization participation:
ACP, AfDB, AFESD, AL, AMF, CAEU, ECA, FAO, G-77, IBRD, ICAO, ICRM, IDA, IDB, IFAD, IFC, IFRCS, IGAD, ILO, IMF, IMO, Interpol, IOC, IOM (observer), ITU, NAM, OAU, OIC, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNHCR, UNIDO, UPU, WFTU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WTrO (observer)
Diplomatic representation in the US:
Somalia does not have an embassy in the US (ceased operations on 8 May 1991); note - the TNG and other factions have representatives in Washington and at the United Nations
Diplomatic representation from the US:
the US does not have an embassy in Somalia; US interests are represented by the US Embassy in Nairobi, Kenya at Mombasa Road; mailing address: P. O. Box 30137, Unit 64100, Nairobi; APO AE 09831; telephone: [254] (2) 537800; FAX [254] (2) 537810
Flag description:
light blue with a large white five-pointed star in the center; blue field influenced by the flag of the UN
Government - note:
although an interim government was created in 2000 other governing bodies continue to exist and control various cities and regions of the country, including Somaliland, Puntland, and traditional clan and faction strongholds

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Source: The CIA World Fact Book 2003

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