Washington has recognized the government of Somalia, doing so for the first time in more than two decades.
U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton announced the recognition on January 17 after talks with new Somali President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud in Washington, D.C.
Washington has previously regarded Somalia as having no effective central government since 1991.
But a new Somali administration took office last year, ending eight years of transitional rule by a corruption-riddled government.
In 1993, Somali militants shot down two U.S. Black Hawk helicopters in the capital, Mogadishu.
Eighteen Americans died and some 80 were wounded in the incident.
Based on reporting by AFP and Reuters