WASHINGTON, April 8 (UPI) -- Piracy and persistent violence in Somalia requires an extension of a national emergency as it pertains to U.S. interests, the White House said.
The transitional government in Somalia is struggling to expand its control beyond a small portion of Mogadishu as it battles against al-Qaida fighters in al-Shabaab bent on establishing an Islamic state.O
U.S. President Barack Obama issued an executive order describing an "unusual and extraordinary" threat to U.S. national and foreign policy interests.
Obama said there was a deteriorating security situation in Somalia complicated by acts of piracy off the Somali coast.
"Because the situation with respect to Somalia continues to pose an unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security and foreign policy of the United States, the national emergency declared on April 12, 2010, and the measures adopted on that date to deal with that emergency, must continue in effect beyond April 12, 2011," the presidential statement read.
Al-Shabaab claimed responsibility for a February suicide attack at a police station that killed 10 people, including civilians and high-ranking police officials.
Four Americans were killed that month off the coast of Somalia after gunfire erupted during an attempt by the U.S. Navy to broker their release
The European Union, meanwhile, agreed recently to support the African Union mission in Somalia with around $92.5 million to help its work in the war-torn country.
Somalia hasn't had a functioning government since 1991.The Rest @ UPI