UK 18 May Coordinating Committee
A rally in celebration of the 25thAnniversary of Somaliland
Wednesday, 18thMay 2016, 1:00PM – 4:30PM
It is 25 years since the Republic Somaliland reasserted the independence it gained on 26thJune 1960 which was recognised by many countries including UK at the time. That independence was compromised after 4 days, when Somaliland voluntarily united with former Italian Somalia on 1st July 1960 to form Somali Republic but re-asserted on 18th May 1991. To celebrate the silver jubilee of this re-assertion of sovereignty, Somaliland community in the UK will be holding static rally at Richmond Terrace opposite 10 Downing Street.
The Republic of Somaliland plays an instrumental role in maintaining peace and stability in the Horn of Africa by fighting against piracy and terrorism. This young nation has avoided the devastation of warlordism, terrorism, and anarchism that continue to ravage in the region. Somaliland has laid the foundations of strong institutions built on the principles of making political compromises, consociational ethnic democracy and by holding one person one vote democratic elections.
Engineer Mohamed Balayah who is an active Somalilander remarked at a meeting of the UK 18 May organising committee “Somaliland people’s struggle to reclaiming their independence was not an easy task. I’m sure our country will secure international recognition one day. What is important is to stay united as a nation”.
While British Somalilanders are holding the rally to celebrate 25 years of sustained peace and stability, the aim of the rally is also to highlight the unjust situation Somaliland face in its quest for international recognition and UK Somaliland Diaspora’s unreserved support to the plight of the people of Somaliland.
During the quarter of a century the Republic of Somaliland was lingering in a de facto statehood, a number of new states including Eritrea, East Timor, Kosovo, former Yugoslav Republics, former Czechoslovakia Republics, Baltic Republics and South Sudan, have joined the world community and had been accorded with full international recognition.
In a recent address to the Somaliland Community in the UK, Mr Ali Adan Awale – Head of the Somaliland Mission in the UK stated “18 May 1991 was the day we saved our people and country from the anarchy next door. I’m proud of our leaders who made the wise decision of reclaiming our independence on that blessed day”
Somaliland was pressured to engage in talks with Somalia. The talks have become futile. There is no sign that Somalia is willing to consider an amiable confirmation of the end of the union (as we have recently seen in the Sudan and Eritrea). Neither is Somaliland willing to enter into any discussion with Somalia that has no de facto legitimacy to represent Somalia. Therefore, without genuine engagement with the Somaliland – Somalia conundrum to lay the defunct union to rest, the current policy of international neglect of Somaliland’s status will inevitably lead to another costly war. Somaliland has already experienced a long costly war in the 1980s waged by the last Somalian government and will do everything it can to retain the independence reinstated at heavy price.
Finally with this rally, we humbly request from the British Government to respect Somaliland’s right for re-asserting the sovereignty it has gained from Britain on 26th June 1960 and to honour the historical ties between the two countries.
Mohamed Omer Maigag
UK 18 May Organising Committee
Notes to the editors
- For more information about the rally please contact:
Mohamed Omer Maigag 07951016681
- For media inquiries, please contact
Farhan Hassan 07432158183