somalia:Tukaraq Battle Presages a Wider Conflict

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Unlike Silanyo, President Bihi came to the office with a strong pledge to “secure the border between Somaliland and Somalia.” ” Dr Galaydh and I will secure the border” he said on his inauguration day. Reality has mugged President when he attempted to implement the Khatumo-Somaliland agreement. Bihi opted for a classic Somaliland policy to promise but never to act.

Somaliland forces attacked Tukaraq checkpoint manned by Puntland customs officers several months ago. It justified the attack on two grounds: An attack by “Puntland-affiliated militias” on people in Tukaraq and Qoriley. Only two weeks ago a peace agreement was concluded between subclans from Mudug and Southern Sool in the presence of Garad Jama Garad Ali and Islan Bashir. The agreement binds Khatumo leader to the spirit and the letter of Qoriley agreement.

Somaliland government aims to secure its Yoo’ada border with “Somalia”. Those border-securing goals seemed to unnerve Puntland. What Somaliland political leaders have forgotten is that Puntland has been at war with Al-shabaab and Da’esh. Even if Somaliland forces had reached Yoo’ada, there would be no guarantee that Somaliland would not attack Garowe. Somaliland artillery could target parts of Garowe. “Puntland should refrain from attacking Somaliland otherwise Garowe will become a disputed territory” said Mohamed Abdullahi Ur’adde , the leader of a Waddani party splinter group.

Although Somaliland companies such as Somtel invest in Puntland , Hargeisa has made breaking business and political ties between Lasanod and Garowe a priority. Puntland, on the contrary, realised it can no longer bank on the policy of plucking low-hanging fruits – securing privileges to represent people from disputed territories at the federal level in Mogadishu. War is disruptive and will cause widespread instability in the ex-British Somaliland territory claimed by Somaliland as a sovereign state. Northern political entrepreneurs lack pragmatism of southern political entrepreneurs. Galka’ayo is a divided city but not a disputed district. Agreements signed by the first generation of northern political leaders are on the verge of unraveling.

Last year Somaliland government conducted a successful election. The election result divided the electorate into Jeegaan ( rainbow) and non-Jeegaan ( non-rainbow) alliances. Conflict in El Afwayn between two constituencies separately classed as Jeegaan and non-Jeegaan is still raging. Somaliland has not sleepwalked into a conflict. Its political position on the sovereignty of Somalia has made it sleepwalk into a conflict. There is no a reason why people in the disputed territories pay a price for Somaliland’s search for statehood based on territories currently known to be under the jurisdiction of Mogadishu. Somaliland government policies are violating the rights of people in disputed territories.

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A warsame

Published by A Warsame is senior Editor and managing Director of Mareeg Media Whatup :+447737886245
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