Somali president renounces American citizenship

Somalia’s President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed has renounced his American citizenship without providing any reasons why he as a dual citizen had decided to give up his adopted passport.

Somali President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed (L) speaks with then-U.S. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis while attending an international conference in 2017. File Photo by Air Force Staff Sgt. Jette Carr/Department of Defense

The president’s office announced the development in a Thursday statement.

“We are officially informing you that the president has renounced his second citizenship of the United States today,” the office said in a statement.

Mohamed, who is also known as Farmajo, began the process shortly after being elected in 2017 despite Somali’s constitution allowing for dual nationality.

The process involved was fairly arduous as it involved legal experts from the naturalization departments of the United States and Somalia.

The president lived in the United States for many years, serving as a diplomat in Washington in the late 1980s before seeking asylum. He returned to Somalia to serve as prime minister in 2010 for eight months.

His family, including his four children, still live in the United States.

Mogadishu’s relationship with Washington has been criticized by some Somalis as Somali forces, trained and supported by U.S. special forces, regularly strike Al Shabaab militants — who are carrying out an insurgency in the Horn of Africa country in an attempt to establish a Sharia state — but in the process have killed an injured civilians.

ByMel Frykberg, African News Agency