The US embassy in Mogadishu has lodged a formal protest with the Somali government over what it has described as the ‘unacceptable treatment’ of its security team during a farewell event for Ambassador Larry André earlier this month.
In a letter addressed to Foreign Affairs Minister Abshir Huruse, interim chargé d’affaires Timothy Trinkel detailed how embassy security staff were assaulted and threatened with violence by the protection personnel of Prime Minister Hamze Barre and South President Abdiasis Lafta Gareen.
Trinkel noted that both security teams had tried to push their way through the entrance, disregarding previously agreed-upon security procedures, and that tensions had escalated as staffers from both delegations demanded special treatment.
The incident, which took place on May 17, put the embassy security team at risk of physical and psychological harm, Trinkel added.
Highlighting that the Somali government was obligated by the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations to protect diplomatic staff, Trinkel said the embassy would be raising the matter with the Somali ambassador in Washington.
The embassy’s protest comes amid concerns about the security situation in Somalia, where Al-Shabaab militants continue to carry out attacks on government and civilian targets.