A small group gathered in the rain at the Capitol in St. Paul Saturday asking for U.S. support in moving the African country of Djibouti towards democracy.
“With the upcoming Djibouti presidential election on April 9, this is our opportunity to help Djibouti achieve true independence through a peaceful transition from 44 years of dictatorship to democracy led by a transitional government,” said Omar Ali Hassan.
Hassan, identified as the U.S. spokesman for the Charte pour un Transition Democratique, or CTD, has appealed to U.S. Rep. Ilhan Omar and President Joe Biden to support this coalition of five political parties that are hoping to oust Ismaïl Omar Guelleh who has been president of the country since 1999.
“Djibouti, has the potential to become a real democracy and a first economy,” said Ali Chehem Ali, a speaker at the rally.
Dijbouti is a small coastal country located in the northeast section of the Horn of Africa. Situated on the Bab el Mandeb Strait that separates the Red Sea from the Gulf of Aden, the country is also host to military bases of several countries, including the U.S. Naval Expeditionary Base Camp Lemonnier.