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Somalia: Government

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Country name: conventional long form:  none

conventional short form:  Somalia

former:  Somali Republic, Somali Democratic Republic
Government type: parliamentary
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)
Constitution: 25 August 1979, presidential approval 23 September 1979

note:  the Transitional National Government formed in October 2000 has a mandate to create a new constitution and hold elections within three years
Legal system: NA
Suffrage: 18 years of age; universal
Executive branch: chief of state:  ABDIKASSIM Salad Hassan (since 26 August 2000); note - Interim President ABDIKASSIM was chosen for a three-year term by a 245-member National Assembly serving as a transitional government; the present political situation is still unstable, particularly in the south, with interclan fighting and random banditry

head of government:  ALI Khalifa Galaydh, appointed by the president 8 October 2000

cabinet:  appointed by the prime minister and sworn in on 20 October 2000

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.
Legislative branch: unicameral People's Assembly or Golaha Shacbiga

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 Islamic (Shari'a) law with a provision for appeal of all sentences
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, ILO, IMF, IMO, Intelsat, 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)
Diplomatic representation from the US: the US does not have an embassy in Somalia; US interests are represented by the US Embassy in Nairobi at Moi Avenue and Haile Selassie Avenue; mail address: P. O. Box 30137, Unit 64100, Nairobi; APO AE 09831; telephone: [254] (2) 334141; FAX [254] (2) 340838
Flag description: light blue with a large white five-pointed star in the center; design based on the flag of the UN (Italian Somaliland was a UN trust territory)
Government - note: An interim Transitional National Government - with a president, prime minister, and 245-member National Assembly - was formed in October 2000. However, 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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