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The new [interim] Somali president, Abdiqasim Salad Hasan, who is in Washington, USA, was on Sunday night [10th September] interviewed by callers at Toronto's Voice of Somali [as published] which is North America's biggest Somali radio station.

The president who appeared weary during the interview which lasted for 40 minutes, answered questions asked by Somalis living in the USA and Canada.

The questions were mainly asked by people interested in the Somaliland and Puntland regions.

The president began by saying that Somaliland and Puntland were a source of pride to him due to the peace and security existing in the two regions.

The president denied reports that he had advocated the use of force against the two regions during an interview with Egypt's 'Al-Ahram' newspaper.

Mr Abdiqasim Salad Hasan said the restoration of peace and reconciliation in Somalia could only be achieved by peaceful means.

"Somalis have fought for 10 years. We are not ready for a repeat. We shall pursue dialogue", said the president.

The president was asked by many callers how he could restore peace: A lecturer at an American university said he would have wished to teach at Mogadishu university if peace existed there.

"I urge you people living in the USA, and Canada, to do something for your country and strive for it, since there are so many requirements. You people are indispensable to your country", the president said.

According to reports the president is expected to visit various cities in North America.


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