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March 16, 2012

Somaliland Did Not Surrender Sovereignty By Attending the London Conference


Somaliland Did Not Surrender Sovereignty By Attending the London Conference

By Mohamed A. Omar, 16 March 2012

Mohamed A. Omar Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation in the Republic of Somaliland.

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Somaliland is re-engaging with international diplomacy related to its neighbour, Somalia. Our country has received widespread praise for its contribution to the recent London Conference. This event represented an important milestone in Somaliland’s diplomacy.

We participated in the conference as an equal, and we laid out our views about how Somaliland can help build peace and stability in Somalia. We are very grateful to the British Government for convening the conference and for inviting us.

It was the first time that Somaliland had ever taken part in an international conference dealing with the future of Somalia. Prior to the conference, some of our people had expressed reservations about Somaliland’s participation, because they were afraid that our Government’s presence in London could be misinterpreted by our international partners as endorsing an eventual return to unity with Somalia.

I believe that our government decisively addressed this issue in our statement to the conference, in which we underlined our view that our declaration of independence in 1991 is definitive. Had we not attended, we would have missed an opportunity to share this view with 55 delegations, represented at very high level.

Given these sensitivities, President Silanyo consulted widely with Somaliland’s political and civil society leaders before deciding to accept the invitation to the Conference. It was important that there be a strong mandate from Somaliland’s two legislative bodies, the Council of Elders and the House of Representatives. In fact, these two bodies had to change our law in order for President Silanyo to attend. This process illustrates Somaliland’s democratic credentials and our culture of consultation. The overwhelming backing for participation in the conference is a mark of our people’s political maturity.

The conference also provided us an opportunity to lay out our ideas about how to bring peace and stability to Somalia. We believe that attempts to find a solution to the problem of Somalia based on the de jure boundaries of the state risk undermining the very stability which the international community is seeking. Furthermore, focusing energy on the re-creation of a centralized state through a top-down approach ignores the realities on the ground, and the decentralized nature of Somali politics.

Somaliland offers a useful example in this regard, as several countries noted at the Conference. Somaliland built peace and democracy through an indigenous bottom-up approach, drawing on traditional conflict resolution methods. We believe that a similar approach is needed in Somalia, and we have offered to share our experience with our brothers and sisters in that country. We would of course be in an even stronger position to contribute to a stable and peaceful Somalia if we were recognised internationally.

The Final Communiqué issued from the Conference also recognised the need for the international community “to support any dialogue that Somaliland and the TFG or its replacement may agree to establish in order to clarify their future relations.” We believe that this clearly supports our vision of a dialogue between two separate entities, which treat each other as equals. It will, I hope, mark a starting point for constructive discussions about our relationship with Somalia, including an acceptance by the authorities in Mogadishu that our voluntary union failed long ago, and that the future stability of the region is best served by accepting Somaliland’s independence.

A number of bilateral meetings between President Silanyo and Ministers from other countries took place in the margins of the conference, all of which were conducted in a spirit of mutual respect and equality. These bilateral talks provided us with the opportunity to discuss concrete ways in which Somaliland can cooperate with other governments to our mutual advantage.

While in London, President Silanyo also attended the launch of the Somaliland Development Corporation at the British Houses of Parliament. The Corporation will facilitate international investment in Somaliland for the benefit of the Somaliland people, circumventing the present problem of non-recognition by providing a transparent, accountable and enforceable means by which international investors can participate in Somaliland ventures. Somaliland was honoured that Minister Henry Bellingham attended the event. The launch was also well-attended by members of Parliament from all major political parties in the UK.

All of this demonstrates that we did not surrender our sovereignty by attending the London Conference. On the contrary, we asserted and reaffirmed our status as a sovereign and responsible regional partner, and in the process garnered significant diplomatic, economic and political support. We will build on this so as to promote further the interests of our people.

Mohamed A. Omar is Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation in the Republic of Somaliland.

Africanarguments.orghttp://africanarguments.org/2012/03/16/somaliland-did-not-surrender-sovereignty-by-attending-the-london-conference-%E2%80%93-by-mohamed-a-omar-foreign-minister-somaliland/

March 12, 2012

Video: Wasiirka Arrimaha Debedda Somaliland-“Puntland waxba kama khuseeyaan wadahadalka Somaliland iyo Somalia”


Video: Wasiirka Arrimaha Debedda Somaliland Maxamed Cabdillaahi Cumar-“Puntland waxba kama khuseeyaan wadahadalka Somaliland iyo Somalia”

March 11, 2012

Somaliland: Video: Gudoomiyaha degmada Xagal Ee Gobolka Saaxil Oo Kawaramay Xaalada Guud Ee Degmadaas iyo Musuqmaasuq Gobolka Saaxil


Video: Gudoomiyaha degmada Xagal Ee Gobolka Saaxil Oo Kawaramay Xaalada Guud Ee Degmadaas Iyo Musuqmaasuq Gobolka Saaxil

Video: Madaxweyne ku Xigeenka Somaliland Saylici oo ka hadlay sadex masuul oo loo xidhay eedo musuqmaasuq


Video: Madaxweyne ku Xigeenka Somaliland Cabdiraxmaan Cabdillaahi Ismaaciil Saylici oo ka hadlay sadex masuul oo loo xidhay eedo musuqmaasuq

February 28, 2012

VIDEO: XASUUQII 1988-KII EE HARGEYSA – War Crimes in Hargeisa 1988 Somaliland

Filed under: NEWS — somaliland247 @ 10:48 am
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VIDEO: SLNTV FILM – XASUUQII 1988-KII EE HARGEYSA

Xasuuqii Loo Geystay shacabkii Somaliland 1988 Barnaamij ay Diyarisay TVga Qaranka

February 26, 2012

Strengthening the UK’s relationship with Somaliland


Strengthening the UK’s relationship with Somaliland

Somaliland President Ahmed Silanyo with UK Foreign Secretary William Hague

Foreign Secretary William Hague met President Silanyo of Somaliland on 22 February, the eve of the London Conference on Somalia.

UK foreign office -The Foreign Secretary and President Silanyo reaffirmed the close ties between the UK and Somaliland. They agreed that Somaliland was making progress in further embedding democracy and discussed issues of mutual interest, including cooperation on trade and to counter piracy. Over the next three years, the UK will provide up to £105 million in development support to Somaliland to promote prosperity, tackle poverty and consolidate progress on stability and democracy.

Speaking after their meeting, the Foreign Secretary said:

“I am delighted to see President Silanyo in London for the Conference on Somalia. Somaliland has valuable lessons to share from its own experience of building stability and democracy. I welcome President Silanyo’s participation at the Conference and am grateful for Somaliland’s continued co-operation in the fight against piracy and terrorism.”

Source: UK foreign office : http://www.fco.gov.uk/en/news/latest-news/?view=News&id=733871182

February 25, 2012

VIDEO: Somaliland President Ahmed Silanyo Speech at London Conference on Somalia


VIDEO: Somaliland President Ahmed Silanyo Speech at London Conference on Somalia

Breakaway Somaliland entity targets investors


Breakaway Somaliland entity targets investors

Feb 24 (Reuters) – The breakaway enclave of Somaliland, which boasts oil and gas potential, has set up a UK-linked corporation to act as an entry point for investors concerned the Somali territory’s lack of international recognition would stop contracts being enforced.

On a visit to London to attend a conference on Somalia, President Ahmed Mohamed Silanyo told Reuters that the purpose of the Somaliland Development Corporation was to “to attract companies and institutions which want to invest in our country.”

“Since we are not a recognised country, insurance is always a difficult problem in Somaliland so if this can help with that, it would be useful.”

Somaliland declared independence from Somalia in 1991 and has enjoyed relative stability compared to the rest of Somalia, including the holding of a series of peaceful general elections, but remains unrecognised internationally.

Silanyo did not indicate what economic sectors he wished investors to target. But energy and mining minister Hussein Abdi Dualeh said in November the northern enclave had hydrocarbon potential with a geology similar to basins containing 9 billion barrels across the Gulf of Aden.

A number of big oil companies with permits to operate there left what is now Somaliland in the late 1980s and declared force majeure during Somalia’s escalating civil conflict.

Several foreign banks have expressed interest in operating in Somaliland where they are keen to capitalise on its untapped market potential. Somaliland has no formal banking sector and its people rely heavily on remittances from diaspora communities in Europe, North America and the United Arab Emirates, as there are no ATMs or loan facilities.

A briefing paper distributed to journalists on the sidelines of the London conference said that despite Somaliland’s “achievements in stability and democracy, international donors cannot deal directly with its government, and foreign investors face uncertainty about whether contracts – the basis of secure business – can be enforced”.

The SDC circumvented the problem of non-recognition by providing “a transparent, accountable and enforceable means by which investors can participate in Somaliland ventures”.

A not-for-profit company had been set up in Britain to act as the founding vehicle, with Somaliland’s Minister of State Mohamed-Rashid Hassan and Britons Myles Wickstead, a former diplomat, and Jeremy Carver, a retired international lawyer, as founding directors.

The SDC is owned by an incorporated trust, the Somaliland Development Corporation Trust, the paper said.

Oil discoveries would be a cash boon to Somaliland though hydrocarbons have often proven to be a curse to African nations as the opaque nature of the industry can breed corruption.

Colonised by Britain while the rest of Somalia was under Italian administration, Somaliland declared independence in 1991 as the rest of the country disintegrated into anarchy.

(Reuters)

February 23, 2012

At London Conference on Somalia, President of Somaliland calls on the international community to recognize his country


At London Conference on Somalia, President of Somaliland calls on the international community to recognise his country

London, 23 February 2012 — The President of Somaliland, Ahmed Mohamed Mohamud Silanyo, today attended the London Conference on Somalia. The Conference included political leaders from over 50 countries and international organizations, including US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.

In his statement to the Conference, the President said that peace and stability in Somalia “will not be achieved by the top-down imposition of a re-created centralized state,” noting the tendency of the international community to focus on approaches that over-emphasize the role of central government institutions in Mogadishu. He instead laid out his views on a bottom-up process to building peace and stability in Somalia, drawing lessons from what worked successfully in Somaliland in the early 1990s.
President Silanyo said that he also firmly believed “that supporting and recognizing Somaliland would help to promote stability and recovery in Somalia.” He referred to Somaliland’s own experience of building “peace through an indigenous bottom-up process, drawing on traditional conflict resolution methods and Islam.”

Somaliland rejects the view that Somalia should be reconstituted within the boundaries that existed up to 1991. In his statement, the President said that “[t]he people of Somaliland chose the path of independence more than 20 years ago and we cannot turn back. To do so would be to deny our recent history, our achievements, and our political reality.” He added that “[a]s a democratically elected government, we must respect our people’s wishes.” The President also called for “an inclusive international discussion about the future of Somaliland, launching a process leading to the recognition of our state.

Somaliland is a former British protectorate. It declared independence from Somalia in 1991 and has since enjoyed relative stability. It has held a series of democratic elections which have been deemed free and fair by international observers. Despite its impressive achievements, Somaliland has not been recognized internationally.

Seychelles And Somaliland Taking Steps Towards Prisoner Transfers


Seychelles President James Michel and President Ahmed Mohamed Silanyo of the Republic of Somaliland

London-Seychelles President James Michel and President Ahmed Mohamed Silanyo of the Republic of Somaliland have discussed, in a meeting in London today, the transfer of convicted Somali pirates currently in prison in Seychelles, to Somaliland to serve their sentences.
 The meeting was attended by the British Minister for Africa, Henry Bellingham, Seychelles Minister Home Affairs, Environment, Transport and Energy, Joel Morgan, Seychelles Minister for Foreign Affairs ,Jean-Paul Adam, and the British High Commissioner to Seychelles, Matthew Forbes, the Somaliland Minister for Foreign Affairs, Dr Mohamed Andillahi Omar, as well as the UNODC Counter-Piracy Programme Coordinator Alan Cole.
The two leaders signed a joint statement to recognize their joint concern about the serious impact piracy has on the region and on international security, and agreed that it is vital to ensure pirates are brought to justice.
President Silanyo confirmed that both the Council of Ministers and Somaliland Parliament had now approved and passed the piracy and prisoner transfer legislation to allow the transfer of convicted pirates.
“This commitment between the Seychelles and Somaliland represents an important step forward in the development of a sustainable regional justice mechanism, that will see suspected pirates apprehended by naval forces at sea, prosecuted by regional states, and if convicted, imprisoned in the region,” said the statement from the two leaders.
President Michel and President Silanyo have also committed to securing the first transfer of 19 convicted pirates from Seychelles to Somaliland by the end of March 2012, in accordance with a Memorandum of Understanding agreed between the Republic of Somaliland and the Government of Seychelles, and based on Somaliland’s prison capacity in dealing with pirate transfers.

“ Somaliland is an important partner in the fight against piracy as it remains a pirate-free area of stability. We commend the Somaliland government for achieving this stability and for its efforts to share the burden of incarcerating the pirates,” said President Michel following the meeting.

Source: http://www.statehouse.gov.sc/index.php/2011-07-15-09-16-47/news-archive/910-seychelles-and-somaliland-taking-steps-towards-prisoner-transfers

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