WASHINGTON—Representative Eliot L. Engel, Ranking Member of the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, today made the following statement on the election of Mohamed Abdullahi Farmaajo as president of Somalia:

"I congratulate my fellow New Yorker, President-elect Farmaajo, on his election yesterday as President of Somalia.  I met with the president-elect last year to discuss areas for bilateral cooperation and the ongoing challenges facing Somalia, including terrorism and food insecurity.  I hope we can build upon our countries' mutual political, economic, and security interests and work toward a 'one person, one vote' system for Somalia's next electoral cycle.

"As a dual citizen, President-elect Farmaajo has devoted much of his life to public service both here in the United States working for New York State government and previously in Somalia as the prime minister.  He is one of tens of thousands of Somali-Americans who have made our country stronger and more diverse.  So it's saddening that as Mr. Farmaajo assumes the presidency in Somalia, our own President wants to slam America's door on that country's people, who we know can contribute so much."