Somali leaders approve draft constitution

June 22, 2012 - 9:27 AM

NAIROBI, Kenya (AP) — Somalia's political leaders have approved a draft constitution the U.N. says was almost seven years in the making.

Somalia is undergoing several political transitions over the next two months, including the adoption of the constitution by an assembly of elders, the voting in of a new parliament and the election of a new president by the lawmakers. Those steps must take place before Aug. 20.

Somali leaders on Friday approved the draft constitution. The president, prime minister and four other leaders signed the document at a meeting in Nairobi, Kenya.

Somali Prime Minister Abdiweli Mohamed Ali said the constitutional is only provisional until Somali citizens can vote on it. The country's security situation doesn't yet allow for such a nation-wide vote.