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‘One country, two systems’ could end Somalia, Somaliland stalemate

Editorial Team




This week, the leaders of Somalia and the self-declared Republic of Somaliland held talks in Djibouti to discuss the future of their relationship.

Somaliland is a former British protectorate, and joined Italian Somaliland in 1960 a few days after gaining independence from Britain to form the Somali Republic. In 1991, it declared independence from Somalia when the last effective central government in Mogadishu collapsed. Although it fulfilled key conditions for statehood, no country recognises Somaliland as an independent nation.

Somaliland wants to remain independent, but Somalia wants Somaliland back.

The two sides have met before on several occasions to resolve their differences but none of the issues agreed were implemented. Some progress have been made in the Djibouti summit: a technical committee was set up to find solutions to contentious issues such as air space management and development aid, among others.

For thirty years, Somaliland has been building a country, wholeheartedly, and it will be very difficult to persuade Somalilanders to reunite with Somalia. Somaliland will try to do everything it can to gain recognition while Mogadishu will do everything in its disposal to making sure it remains part of it: politicians in Mogadishu promising to unify Somaliland with the rest of Somalia every election circle.

Relations between the two remain tense. International actors are leading efforts to revive dialogue between the two sides, Djibouti being the latest.

To avoid any kind of confrontation, the two sides should adopt the ‘one country, two systems’ model.

There should be one Somalia, but Somaliland should be allowed to retain its own economic and political systems, but under the sovereignty of Somalia. It should continue to have its own governmental system, legal, economic and financial affairs, including trade relations with foreign countries, all of which are independent from those of Somalia, but the government in Mogadishu maintains control over Somaliland’s foreign affairs and defence.

The ‘one country, two systems’ will give Somaliland a high degree of autonomy; it will have its separate way of governance and independent legal systems, its own police force, central bank, while being part of Somalia, but under the sovereignty of Mogadishu.

Somaliland has its own police, military, currency, holds presidential elections regularly, and its political system is different from the rest of Somalia. The ‘one country, two systems’ is already in place. Hargeisa needs to relinquish foreign affairs and defence to Mogadishu, and the two sides should reach an agreement to formalise this.



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    June 19, 2020 at 3:43 am

    Considering what is happenning in other one-country 2-system entities like China/HK or India/Kashmir, I think this system is open to abuse. China is undoing all the ‘autonomy’ that HongKong has enjoyed. And Kashmir has been fully integrated into India.

    The best option for Somaliland is to be Fully Recognised.

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      June 19, 2020 at 10:19 pm

      Absolutely agree.

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        June 20, 2020 at 4:08 pm

        true the world they should give their recognized somaliland becouse they had already in the world 1960 beofe unait southern Somali

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      June 20, 2020 at 5:45 am

      Well saidn we dint need should ir must.
      Somaliland is Somaliland, no more unity

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        June 21, 2020 at 4:29 am

        We all know who wants the separation, only one sub clan of isaac, who is born dictating north west of somalia for the last 28 yrs,don’t forget we had long civil war and we dont want another one.

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        Ahmed Adem

        June 21, 2020 at 2:30 pm

        Midnimo Qadhmuun Oo Dambe Oo Dhexmarta Somaliland Iyo Soomaaliya Waxaa Ka Dhoow Qoraxda Oo Galbeed Ka Soo Baxda.

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      Mohamed osman

      June 21, 2020 at 3:39 am

      Somaliland will unite with Somalia when D’Jabuti unites with somalia.because jibuti also is part of somali weyne.
      Guys don’t miss around the fact of the History of somaliland.

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    Ahmed D

    June 19, 2020 at 6:48 am

    Who ever wrote this misleading article knows little about Somaliland’s history. Somaliland is not part of Somalia, it’s a existing nation that united with Somalia to form the Somali Republic, a Republic that ceased to exist In 1991, very much like the USSR and Yugoslavia. The problem is lack of information and/or pure disregard for Somaliland’s case on the part of the international community. “If we recognize you, Somalia will disintegrate” is what Somaliland’s official usually get from world leaders. 5 million Somalilanders have had their lives in limbo for the past 30 years due to this immoral position taken by UK,US,EU and other major world players. Somaliland is peaceful and democratic, has kept terrorism, piracy, and human smuggling off its shore, it’s time for the world to do the right and re-recognize Somaliland.

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      June 19, 2020 at 4:45 pm

      History adinkaa sameyayaay beenta and we don’t u to repeat fake history over and over

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      June 19, 2020 at 4:47 pm

      This is an impossibility. Somaliland is not asking for cessation, it’s simply asking for recognition. Somaliland belongs to Somalilanders as historically inherited.they were just fooled with colonial victory euphoria and they needed to be stronger and safer to bar off future colonization that’s why they voluntarily joined Somalia. But what did Somalia do?denied them all the resources and directed them to Mogadishu. And when Somalilanders decided enough is enough and nullified the unification,Siad Baare masaccred Somalilanders. Somalia-Ethiopian war handed Victory to Somalilanders and they gained back their country. Loosing a chunk to is foolish for the world to deny Somalilanders recognition. It is also impossible for Somalia to ever rule Somalilanders. The UN and Igad are making 5M somalilanders suffer for nothing. Lack of international recognition scares away international investors, financial systems and direct Aid. Something Somalilanders would rather do without than join Somalia.

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        June 19, 2020 at 8:29 pm

        Somaliland did exist even before Somalia gained independence from Italy, handful countries recocognized Somaliland. Anything less than full recogniton will not be accepted by Somalilanders.

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      Ahmed M. Gaileh

      June 20, 2020 at 8:34 pm

      Somaliland will unite with Somaliyaa when Egypt unites with Israel and the day Eritrea unites with Ethiopia 🇪🇹
      That is the ultimate

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    Biggest boss

    June 19, 2020 at 7:52 am

    What kind of country you know let’s a region in their land deal with foreign governments? I understand regional economic politics but dealings with foreign countries is beyond me. Who would write such a article?

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    June 19, 2020 at 11:19 am

    The problem with such proposal is the lack of trust and confidence between the two.Somalia can not be trusted to keep and honor any agreement legal or otherwise as evident in their lack of respect of all previous meetings held in London, Turkey and Djibuti.I belive the only way forward now is part company and the international community accepts the actual reality on the ground.furthermore there is no benefit whatsoever for somaliland to remain part of somalia and if anything they might probably lose all they have built for the past 30 years given the situation somalia is in

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    Abdirahman Osman

    June 19, 2020 at 12:06 pm

    #Somaliland is no more somalia and never will be.
    Get that through your thick 😈.

    SOMALILAND is a country and being part of some, sick, Confederacy ain’t gonna happen.

    SOMALILAND is Somaliland, period.

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    June 19, 2020 at 12:13 pm

    Ironically it’s Somaliland that can provide security not Somalia. For Somalilanders to go back, they might at well walk into a river full of crocodiles, it will be quicker, horrible as it is. Safe themselves another 30 years of genocide.
    What defence system does somalia have to guard Somaliland, it can’t even guard their own nation. Somaliland on the hand has mighty defence that rivals many recognised nations and is able to provide security to somalia ironically. However it’s very clear Somalilanders don’t want any part of Somalia period, their standing is enough is enough and rightfully so, since their re-independence 91 they have done and achieved so much more than their war torn troublesome neighbour somalia. It’s time for united nations to recognise once again Somaliland, it’s the only solution any other will bring back horrendous conflict and will devastate the Horn and the East.

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      fatima ali

      June 19, 2020 at 8:51 pm

      Yes!! That is very very true Somaliland strong now the ball as they say is Somalilands Court. I was in Somaliland during the War working for the UN I witnessed the devastation and the British Rimefire de Mining the North and some lost their lives but many many died from the towns and Diaspora. And the SNM Soldiers whom saved Somaliland they all should have a Statue to Commemorate Fighting to SAVE Somaliland. My Father was born in Burco. I wilm never ever forget what I saw. The UN did much for the infra structure of Somaliland and in the hard times of Somaliland.

      Delivered respectively:

      Medicines/innoculations/Vaccines and more. And Medical Operational Equipment.
      Hospital Equiment by sea or air.

      Materials for the Infra Structure. e.g Nails Hammers corrigated iron. Machinery. and more I did the Inventory so I saw it all along with the Somaliland Doctors: Dr. Abdi Aw Dahir and Dr. Ali Saleh Samir iman now Deceased Ameen. Whilst I am born British bless my mother Janet and my Father Ahmed..Somalilander I was one of the First Women mixed British in Somaliland I took the Team to my fathers Town:

      Odweyne and the Diaspora and Buhodhle my grannys Town. My fathers mothers Town. I could not miss my Grandmothers Town. When they saw hs UN they cried and gave us sheep Gots and offered us a Camel but to big for us all to put on our 4×4 kkk for me I went back in my fathers footsteps never forgotten.. Father ‘The Girl Done Good’. Love you daddy and mumma RIP Ameen.


      Educational Equipment. Books etc. And medical Equipment


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    June 19, 2020 at 2:22 pm

    “One country two systems”. Hong Kong was not in the negotiations for this system. It was between GB and China. Hong Kong was ceded to GB by nationalist China for 100 years.
    Somaliland will not go back to unity with Somalia.

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    June 19, 2020 at 5:07 pm

    Arinkan waxan uu arka inu yahy qalad maxada somali waa inay ka gursadan Oo somaliland loo fasaxiin waxa ay sheegayso sida cidanka iyo dhaqalah hadii kale waxay noqonaysa aqoonsigii aya rabtay inay hesho Oo aya noqodan wadan agood buxada lah marka Yaan laga aqabalin arinkan waxa kasta waa inay somali hoos timada somalilanad

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    Hassan A Ahmed

    June 19, 2020 at 5:43 pm

    I donot think the international commercial will back Somalia’s agenda. The reality is that Somaliland deserves recognition after long struggle for its success. No one or an institution can detect Somalilands independence.

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    June 19, 2020 at 6:18 pm

    What about the regions want to remain in Somalia, you can’t force other to agree with your idea, sool, borame, sanaag, buhoodle get real. If federal government want to empor to easily do so

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      June 20, 2020 at 8:29 pm

      Don’t embarrass yourself who wants to be part of what is going in Somalia BTW when they were fighting for their independence from Somalia none stayed behind

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    June 19, 2020 at 7:06 pm

    Asking somali land to rejoin somalia is like asking Jordan to rejoin gazza

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    Farah M Awad

    June 19, 2020 at 8:42 pm

    what the world as a whole forgot was the adpiration of all Somali’s in 1960 abd that was to form a greater Somalia,inclusive of ex British Somaliland ex Italian Somaliland, ex French Somaliland, NFD(Northern Frontier Districk of Kenya and Haud in Ethiopia.That was why Somalilander spearheaded the Union with Somalia, giving up their 5 days old indipendance from Great Britain.That was the main reason for giving up their hard earned indipendance.Their wishes were to unite all Somali speaking people under One flag.Their dream and aspiration ended up at Arusha Accord, when Somalia dropped all claims against Kenya Ethiopia and Djibuuti.So Somaliland re joining Somalia is a pipe dream.The World should either revive the Dream of Greater Somalia, and that means,Kenya, Ethiopia and Djibuuti relinquishing their Land for that to happen,do you see the illogic of this thinking?
    I would like to be part of a Greater Somalia,but let us not day dream, for that to happen the whole Map of Africa has to change.The sooner the World come to their senses and accept the reality that Somaliland will not re join Somalia that is has never seen a single Days peace in the last 30 years.Who would in their right mind jump in the the Fire?
    Somali’s would be served well by friends and well wishers by recognising the fact on the ground and that is accepting the 2 State system.

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      June 19, 2020 at 10:56 pm

      Don’t waste your time of discussing about Somali and Somaliland. After all, the Somalia you are talking about is not an independent State. It is a failed State. AMISOM is taking care of the safety of their so-called Government. And you know the chaos going on every day. It is a failed State. They live and function under the propaganda of the Big Powers who are taking care of their interest. God forbid we don’t want to be part of that mess. We can stay without any recognition if we trust each other and forget about the foolish so called tribalism. I wish the young generation organize themselves and unite. You have to know unity is strength. May Allah the great be with us. Ameen….

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      Abdirahman Ibrahim Bouh

      June 21, 2020 at 9:09 pm

      The will of the people is the will of the God (Somaliland)i

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    June 20, 2020 at 1:14 am

    There is no going back, how can we reunited with Somalia, where is killing upon killing. The Somalia government is not stable and we will never be stable. Somaliland has fought for its independence and strive over the last 28 years with functioning government. On the other hand Somalia has failed miserably, the so called government in Somalia lives are not safe and have to depend on outside intervention. So how we united with a country in terrible state? when are they gonna realise that somaliland is 28 years head of them. Somaliand doesn’t want to be drag back into civil war and other problems that come with Somalia.

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    Dr Hussein Abdillahi

    June 20, 2020 at 3:47 am

    Somaliland is not going to forfeit its’ hard worn independence. They built their country from the ashes. Millions of all sorts of landmines were littered in every inch of the country. Today Somaliland has developed itself from the ruins left by the black colonialists of zoomalia to a modern state without any help from IC. This hard worn freedom won’t be abandoned. Somaliland is here to stay. The writer of this piece has completely forgotten that the Somali army is the one who destroyed this country and killed and maimed its’ population. Never again a union with this Mafioso villa wardigle failled state!

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    June 20, 2020 at 5:13 am

    Foreign affairs and defense are the two elements that Somalia doesn’t control anywhere it’s own territory, how could Somaliland possibly trust Somalia with what has consistently failed to manage for three decades? Impracticable borrowed idea.

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    Mohamed Dhamac

    June 20, 2020 at 6:35 am

    Somaliland should be recognized soon as possible. The Somaliland country and government has nothing to do with Somalia. It’s wrong way to write, if they gone diveded ore the both part will stay to getter. What. Somalilanders took back theire country after the war.
    They hunted away dictator Siad Bare regime.
    Built this unique country from scratch again sins 1991. What the country Somaliland achieve almoust 30 years its amazing. I can not summieize with words.

    Somalia failed politics and politician can’t use we have talk with Somaliland. That will not make the guy who his uncle is Siad Barre. This can’t make him Alected again. That guy Farmaajo he don’t even have controll over Muqdisho.

    But Somalilanders is a ro-modell to Horn of Africa. Safety, stability, growining welfare and economics and developing healthcare, developing schools. All this and much more has Somalilnd achieve in 29 years. Without help from rest of the world. Somaliland should been seen with other ages here after. This country fulfills everything to be recognized. It’s was even recognized country back in 60 century. How long should the people Somaliland should wait to receive that chair in UN.

    A proud Somalilander!
    —Mohamed Dhamac Hassan

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    June 20, 2020 at 6:53 am

    Keep crying, but Qabiil had never and will never be Qabiil. So keep of your mind about being a recognizable country. Bihi and old man and was among those caused mass killing in Hargeisa and now trying to mislead the young innocents. That’s the dead guys history.

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    June 20, 2020 at 6:54 am

    I mean Will never be Qaran

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    Mohamed Omar Irri

    June 20, 2020 at 3:40 pm

    The Republic of Somaliland is a sovereign country, nor part of Somalia, the only way Somaliland and Somalia can cooperate betweet them is that when Somaliland is recognized by Somalia and international communities. Any kind of reunification between Somaliland and Somalia is just like to get blood from a solid stone.

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    Awaleh Maah

    June 20, 2020 at 4:16 pm

    The somalilanders will allow anything except full recognition as an independent country.
    Two countries not one country.

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      Awaleh Maah

      June 20, 2020 at 4:18 pm

      I mean will not allow

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    June 20, 2020 at 8:00 pm

    Even if we put aside what the two parts think and their claims we need to know and measure what is logical and seems sensible.
    For example which method seems more peaceful and gives you security to relay on it, which way ensures you more benefit.
    According to me if Somaliland gets recognition it will be another Somali country and can help Somalia ( in Somalia POV it claims that we are one and we need to stay as one, okay apply the same thing with Djibouti and Somali brothers in Kenya and Ethiopia).
    If Somaliland joins back to Somlia what does Somalia has that can ensure us peace, equality and not the same thing that happened 30 years ago and putting Somalilanders under your feet.
    And about Somaliland been independent before it joined Somalia her only ambition and goal was to unite all Somalis under the name of Islam and brotherhood which Somalia threw into trash let alone humanity.
    Stop saying Somaliland will return to Somalia, it is like refusing a shareholder or visitor to get back to his home or to manage his rights according to his share.
    Lastly if Somalia is sincere and wants us to come together let Somalia join Somaliland and allow Somaliland to rule over Somalia just once as it have more credibility than Somalia, just once and see how things turn.( which Somalia will not allow and makes them hypocrite and double standard).
    To this day Somalia can’t give me one single valid point about why Somaliland can’t stand alone and get recognition.
    Conclusion which is why I think Somalia is been like this is the consequence of Italy colonisation left behind.

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    Ahmed Hassan

    June 20, 2020 at 11:38 pm

    In short, never.

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    June 21, 2020 at 3:36 am

    Your idea one government and two systems is absurd because it cannot be trusted and as somalilander we don’t want go back. What I would like to tw separate countries as we were and to help each other, civilian movements and business should be free to settle in both countries as they now but make more official. Competition makes great civilian will also have more choice to settle all the 5 somali nation.

  24. Avatar

    Abdirahman Hussein Ahmed

    June 24, 2020 at 3:06 pm

    No one country but two country,they are different don’t say that please clarify your statement.

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How the ambitions of Hassan Ali Khaire contributed to his fall

Editorial Team




In mid-2018, Hassan Ali Khaire assembled his communications team and asked them to build a strong social media presence for his office and create a public image for himself. He wanted his government’s work to be publicised and to show Somalis and the world a new prime ministerial office never seen before in the post-civil war Somalia. He wanted to portray a powerful, superior prime minister.

The immediate-former prime minister was the only government official running three different Twitter accounts. The official account for the office of the prime minister, two personal accounts; one in English (and Somali) and the other in Arabic – to communicate with the Arab world – Somalia is a member of the Arab League, and the Gulf countries play their geopolitics in Somalia. Other politicians did not think of this, but Khaire did. He is a former corporate executive and an NGO manager. Khaire understands the importance of media more than other Somali politicians do. He is the most eloquent politician Somalia has seen in recent decades.

President Mohamed Farmajo and PM Khaire set to finish their first term in office together, run for office again and return to Villa Somalia together, but Khaire had an ambition, a presidential ambition. He wanted to succeed Farmajo, and Farmajo knew it. No one saw their break up coming.

Since 2000, every president had some sort of disagreement with his prime minister. Farmajo and Khaire had disagreements but it was hidden from the public. Because of this, Khaire became the longest serving premier in the post-civil war era.

The debate around Somalia’s election of which no one knows when and how it will happen is what killed the broamance between Farmajo and Khaire. The trust between the two has been broken. Farmajo wants a direct election in which the Somali public can pick their political representatives. The president’s opponents say a direct election will not be possible, and that Farmajo is using the universal suffrage as an excuse to extend his term in office. Khaire was seen as supporting the ideas of his boss’ opponents; he always called for timely polls, although the government never said it would delay elections.

There is no love lost between the leaders of the federal member states (FMS) and Farmajo. Khaire thought this was an opportunity to exploit: get closer to these leaders and alienate the president. When FMS leaders gathered in the central town of Dhuusamareeb in July to discuss the electoral process, Khaire left Mogadishu and joined them to negotiate for clan-based election which would take place as schedule. Days later, Farmajo flew to Dhuusamareeb and joined other leaders, beating Khaire at his own game. It was a battle of tactics won by Farmajo.

FMS leaders accidentally exposed Khaire in his double-dealing between Farmajo and FMS leaders. According to privy sources, Khayre prodded FMSs to reject one person, one vote in private while he pretended to be on Farmajo’s side in public.

In one of those farewell banquets in Dhuusamareeb, one FMS leader told Farmajo to drop the quest for one person, one vote like every other principal. It was like saying, ‘your PM is with us on this.’

One Western country was fond of Khaire to the extent that their diplomats in Halane were openly hostile to Farmajo in favour of his prime minister. To that end, that particular country was indirectly pushing for indirect elections which they thought will favour Khaire. Inside sources say that this particular country pushed the envelope too hard in not only giving Khaire false hope of easy presidency but also made him alienate his boss and the parliament.

The Lower House has passed an election law backing the one person, one vote election, but the Senate isn’t convinced about the possibility of direct polls. Sources within the Senate say Khaire was behind a statement by the Upper House leadership disagreeing with the possibility of holding a direct election, and called for talks between the president and the FMS leaders. On the electoral issue, Farmajo and Khaire have been pulling from different ends, Khaire whispering behind the president’s back silently, according to Villa Somalia insiders.

“We cannot lead a country when the prime minister is working against the president. The president is giving Somalis a chance to elect their leaders direct, and Khaire is against this,” a close ally of President Farmajo told The Frontier.

On July 25, three days after the Dhuusamareeb conference concluded, the Somali parliament voted to withdraw confidence from PM Khaire and his administration. At mid-night, he accepted the parliamentary decision and resigned.

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US says Somali parliament’s removal of Khayre ‘illegal’

Editorial Team




The United States has expressed regrets over the removal of Prime Minister Hassan Ali Khayre from office in a vote of no-confidence by parliament.

The US embassy in Mogadishu, in a statement, said there has been ‘irregularities’ in the vote to withdraw confidence in Prime Minister Khayre and his government.  It said the action of the parliament and the president ‘heightened political tensions and undermined the ongoing process of dialogue and negotiation’ between the Federal Government of Somalia, Federal Member States, and other key stakeholders.

“This irregular process is a setback for the reform agenda Somalia has pursued with the support of the United States.  Somalia’s stability, security, and prosperity can only be built through cooperation, coordination, and compromise among Somalia’s leaders; if any individual or institution seeks to dominate the others, it undermines the stability of the entire nation,” read part of the statement.

The embassy said the only path forward to timely, peaceful, implementable federal elections is through broad-based consultation and constructive dialogue among stakeholders.

Developing a workable, broadly acceptable election model is key to preserving Somalia’s security and stability, it said.

The US is one of Somalia’s key donors and supports its military. The United States has provided more than $3 billion in humanitarian assistance for Somalia since fiscal year 2006 to address the problems of drought, famine, and refugees. Since 2011, the United States has provided an additional $253 million in development assistance to support economic, political, and social sectors to achieve greater stability, establish a formal economy, obtain access to basic services, and attain representation through legitimate, credible governance.

Last year, the US reopened a bureau for the U.S. Agency for International Development, or USAID, that has been closed since a civil war began here in 1991.

The US has around 500 soldiers and military advisors based in Somalia that often accompany the Somali army and special operations forces on ground raids against al Shabab group.

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Somali parliament removes Prime Minister Ali Khayre

Editorial Team




Somali lawmakers voted to remove Prime Minister Hassan Ali Khaire and his cabinet, a move that is likely to delay elections, deteriorating recent gains in the Horn of Africa nation.

A hundred and seventy members of parliament supported the vote while eight rejected, according to Speaker Mohamed Mursal Abdirahman.

President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo is required to appoint a new premier in 30 days, but may do so in days.

“The rift between the government and the legislature is undermining the progress that has been made, and to that end I have decided to consider the voice of the House of Representatives as the foundation of our nationhood,” Farmajo said in a statement carried on state media.

Khaire, a former oil executive, was appointed in February 23 and approved by parliament in March 2017.

The country is planning to go for elections, but it is still unclear what kind of elections it will have. The electoral commission said it is planning to hold a one person, one vote in a year, while the opposition is calling for a timely election which means it prefers the current clan system where clan elders pick legislators.

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