This was stated by the Somaliland interior minister Mohammed Kahin Ahmed during an interview with www.somalilandsun.com that touched on different topics concerning the state of the nation, to start with the recent tour by some British MPs who came to Somaliland on a facts finding mission, while brushing away the alleged Eastern regions border dispute with Puntland, an administrative region of Somalia.
“First of all I take this opportunity to thank members of the UK all Party Group for Somaliland for visiting our country on a fact finding mission” said the minister adding that though many British parliamentarians have visited Somaliland on various occasions in the past the recent one was the most vibrant thence anticipation of vigorous lobby for recognition within the British parliament.
The Somaliland security chief was referring to an April three day’s fact finding mission in Hargeisa undertaken by a three member team from the UK All party group for Somaliland composed of MP Stephen Doughty- Labour party from Cardiff, MP Liz Moiness-Labour Party from Greater Manchester and MP Mathew Offord-Conservative Party representing North London
During their visit the British legislators held lengthily and fruitful deliberations with government officials, opposition political parties chiefs, youths, business leaders and non state actors as well as British-Somalilanders.
Minister Kahin is optimistic that the vibrancy of MP Stephen Doughty who chairs the all party group for Somaliland shall translate in renewed attention by the British government and Parliament, (House of Commons and House of Lords) as pertains the elusive 26 years quest for freedom.
“I found MP Doughty to be a person determined to help get Somaliland finally recognized” Said minister Kahin stressing that this fact traces its roots to the MPs large number of constituents in Cardiff.
Queried on whether the issue of the oft alleged border dispute with Somalia’s Puntland region was raised during his meeting with the visiting UK legislators, owing to the fact that the said boundaries were demarcated by Great Britain over a century ago when it was colony master of then British Somaliland protectorate, the security chief was affirmative.
Said he, while we discussed several issues among them UK support to local security agencies, multi-sectored development funding among many, main topic revolved around the claim by Somalia’s Puntland region on parts of eastern Somaliland”
Speaking to somalilandsun in Hargeisa prior to his departure for home MP Stephen Doughty who acknowledged discussing the border issue with the interior minister had stated that
“It is indisputable that present Day Somaliland was a British protectorate until 26th June 1960 when the Queen signed its proclamation of independence, followed by a voluntary union with present day Somalia which is a former Italian colony” It joined this union with clearly defined borders thence any jurisdictional dispute is a sham”
According to the Somaliland security chief there are many historic and legal documents to support the present day Somaliland boundaries of which he shared with the UK legislators. Same were shared with somalilandsun
The first was of a treaty establishing the Somaliland and Somalia boundaries signed by Great Britain and Italy in Rome on 5th May 1884 which clearly indicates that
- Somaliland Protectorate and is located between Latitude 8’ to 11’ 30’ north of the equator and Longitude 42’ 45 to 49’ East; and consists of the land, islands, and territorial water above and below the surface, the airspace and the continental shelf.
- The Republic of Somaliland is bordered by the Gulf of Aden to the north; Somalia to the east; the Federal Republic of Ethiopia to the south and the west; and the Republic of Djibouti to the North West.
- The territory of the nation is inviolable, and shall not be trespassed upon.”
Treaty of 1884
Pointing to a map the interior minister said “This map of the Somaliland Protectorate and consequently of the independent STATE OF SOMALILAND, and. since 1991, the REPUBLIC OF SOMALILAND sets out clearly the international boundaries which were delineated under a series of international agreements”
Other documents of import shared by the minister include exchange of letters dated June 1960 between Great Britain and Somaliland that are were deposited with the United Nations-Treat series.
“If the UN accepted this exchange of letters it clearly indicates that the global body was satisfied with all pertinent issues relevant to Somaliland as a member country, more so its borders”
Another document pertains to proclamation of Somaliland signed by Her Royal Majesty Queen Elizabeth that not only proclaims Somaliland independent but terminates HRM’s protection over the protectorate of Somaliland.
Stressing that Somaliland a former British protectorate entered into a voluntary later turned fateful union with Somalia a former Italian colony, Minister Mohamed Kahin opinionated that alleged border dispute in the east or continued insinuations of jurisdiction by Somalia was a vagrant violation of international law.
“It remains to be seen how long the international community remains deaf and blind to our recognition aspirations not to mention indifference to violation of our territorial integrity” says Kahin
On the recognition aspect of his country 27 years since withdrawing from union with Somalia, the security chief said “United States, UK and the EU among many others have all concurred that Somaliland has fulfilled all requirements for an independent and sovereign state through her democratic institutions however fear opening a Pandora box should they announce Somaliland recognition before a member of the Africa Union” (AU).
Referring to the November presidential elections report by over 60 international observers from European, Asian, American and African countries, minister Kahin said
“The international observers not only termed the elections as free and fair but went on to place Somaliland as third most democratic country after South Africa and Ghana” said the minister.
“We are a real country, Said Minister Kahin as he Urged Somalia to desist from continued and negative interference in issues Somaliland and in the contrary seek partnership in solving never ending troubles with expertise in Hargeisa,
said he “aggression never attained peace anywhere on earth so why should it here in Somaliland?”
Turning to Puntland, the Somaliland interior minister Mohamed Kahin warned the Garowe based Somalia regional authorities against continued armed incursions into Somaliland because “Restrain and caution doers not translate to fear”
Speaking on the general security of Somaliland Mr. Mohamed Kahin touched on the El-Afweine skirmishes where he participated in the conflict resolution “We had sent the traditional elders, the house of elders and citizens to quell the violence which hasn’t recurred.”
adding that “The recent skirmishes in Fadhi-gaab is not connected to El-Afweine conflict this is a new problem which we have already solved and captured the perpetrators who shall be brought before a court of law to answer for their crimes.”
When asked about the gangs of youths who have taken control of Somaliland towns and cities by robbing unsuspecting members of the public he said “The government sends a strong warning to these teenagers if they are caught terrorizing citizens we shall lock them up for a very long time.”
He urged parents and the communities to work closely with the government to make sure the security of the country is not compromised at all.