New date for talks

MOGADISHU - The start of peace talks in Somalia was delayed for several hours yesterday, then postponed to Thursday, as hundreds of clan elders, politicians and former warlords waited for the arrival of Prime Minister Ali Mohamed Gedi.

MOGADISHU - The start of peace talks in Somalia was delayed for several hours yesterday, then postponed to Thursday, as hundreds of clan elders, politicians and former warlords waited for the arrival of Prime Minister Ali Mohamed Gedi.

"The prime minister is flying in from Kenya and will stop in Baidoa first to pick up the speaker of parliament," an official said.

The conference, which has already been postponed twice because of security fears, is seen as the interim government's best hope of securing peace and strengthening its legitimacy. The administration has struggled to impose authority on the Horn of Africa nation since ousting a hardline Islamic courts movement from the coastal capital in December. - Reuters

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