Obama Extends Somali Pirate Sanctions

     WASHINGTON (CN) – President Barack Obama has extended for 1 year provisions of an executive order freezing the assets of people or organizations threatening the stability of Somalia, particularly through acts of piracy on the high seas.
     The block also extends to groups threatening the Transitional Federal Charter adopted by Somalia in February 2004 and the African Union force stationed in Somalia.
     Fighters of al-Shabab, an al-Qaeda linked rebel force, continue to threaten the stability of the central government. The government’s mandate expires next month without a constitution in place to guide the nation’s future.
     The 825 member National Constituent Assembly will convene for the first time this week to approve a constitution to be ratified by national referendum later this year.
     Executive orders lapse after 1 year unless the president determines they are in the interests of the United States. Orders can be extended indefinitely on a yearly basis.
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