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Somali president in Minnesota, seeks help in rebuilding nation

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Somalia's new president is in Minneapolis Friday to urge Somali-born Minnesotans to help him rebuild their troubled homeland.

Hassan Sheikh Mohamud's visit to Minnesota falls one day after Secretary of State Hillary Clinton announced that the U.S. is formally recognizing the Somali government for the first time in more than two decades, CNN reported.

Mohamud met with Clinton, President Barack Obama and congressional lawmakers, including Rep. Keith Ellison, D-Minn., MPR said.

Somalia descended into civil war and chaos after dictator Mohamed Siad Barre was overthrown in 1991, when clan warlords moved in to seize power.

Mohamud is expected to address a crowd of thousands at 5 p.m. at the Minneapolis Convention Center, MPR says.

Census data indicate that Minnesota's Somali population is the largest in the United States. A 2011 report said there were more than 32,000 people of Somali ancestry in the state.

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