U.N. Security Council concerned over election impasse in Somalia - U.S. envoy

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FILE PHOTO: New U.S. Ambassador to United Nations, Linda Thomas-Greenfield holds a news conference in New York

(Reuters) - The United Nations Security Council on Wednesday expressed concern over a standoff in Somalia on holding new elections, the United States' top U.N. diplomat said.

President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed's four-year term ended last month without a successor and Somalia’s parliament was supposed to elect a new president on Feb. 8, but the exercise was delayed because new lawmakers have yet to be picked.

U.S. Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield said in a virtual press briefing following a closed-door session that the 15-member Security Council "noted ongoing efforts to find agreement between leaders of the federal government of Somalia and the federal member states" on implementing a revised electoral model.

"They expressed concern over the ongoing impasse and called for Somalia's leaders to engage in a constructive dialogue at the earliest opportunity without precondition to resolve outstanding issues," she said.

(Reporting by Simon Lewis; editing by Grant McCool)