Somaliland clashes with secessionists

2012-02-10 13:59
Hargeisa - The breakaway territory of Somaliland is battling its own secessionists in a dispute that has raised tensions with neighbouring Puntland, in an area of Somalia usually more peaceful than the rest of the country.

The fighting first erupted in January after the leaders of the northern regions of Sool, Sanaag and Cayn decided to band together into a new state called Khaatumo and declared they wanted to be an independent region within Somalia.

Somaliland's troops have since clashed with militia fighters loyal to Khaatumo, with reports of dozens of casualties. Puntland's President Abdirahman Mohamud Farole stepped into the row on Wednesday, accusing Somaliland of creating chaos.

"It is unfortunate that Somaliland is sowing seeds of insecurity in the peaceful towns of Puntland at a time the world is solving the entire country's violence," he told reporters, calling for Somaliland to pull its troops back.

The newly declared Khaatumo state is near the border with Ethiopia and is a disputed area that Somaliland seized from Puntland in 2007, though relations between the two territories have improved since.

The chairperson of Khaatumo's foreign relations forum, Osman Hassan, has said unless the dispute is resolved "it is bound to escalate into a wider regional conflagration as other clans related to one side or the other take sides".

Both Somaliland and Puntland have enjoyed relative stability compared to the rest of the Horn of Africa country and international mining and oil exploration firms are prospecting in the region.

The fighting also comes ahead of a conference in London on February 23 bringing together heads of government and international organisations to discuss ways to end the instability in Somalia.

New administration


Somaliland is an internationally unrecognised state that declared independence from Somalia in 1991.

Fighting between Somaliland forces and Khaatumo fighters flared up again on Wednesday near the border town of Buhoodle, after a week-long stalemate, forcing thousands to flee.

"Somaliland's national army has repulsed the attack by the Khaatumo militia, which attacked them in the early hours of the morning [on Wednesday], after the arrival of reinforcements," Somaliland's Minister of Defence Ahmed Ali Adami told Reuters.

Adami said three government soldiers were killed and 12 wounded in Wednesday's fighting.

Mohamed Yousouf, a member of Khaatumo's new administration, told Reuters by phone from Buhoodle, they had lost six fighters and 11 were wounded. He said they had captured four Somaliland soldiers, while seven of their fighters had been seized.

"Somaliland and Puntland claim that the Khaatumo region is part of their territory, but we want to be an autonomous region that is part of the Federal Republic of Somalia," he said.

"We have had no communication with the government in Puntland at all," Yousouf said.

Read more on:    somaliland  |  puntland  |  east africa
SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
0 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
/Sport
 

3 sports games you have to watch this weekend

Whether it’s date night or a braai with buddies, plan around these three exciting sporting games!

 
 

Men24.com

How to maintain your mo, bro
Hottie of the day: Colette
Pro-skater Tony Hawk rides a hoverboard!
10 ways to drive her wild!

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

20% off ALL TV Series

Choose from 1000’s of the hottest TV Series . While stocks last. Shop now!

Festive gifts!

Check out our awesome range of festive gifts to make everyone’s wishes come true. Shop now!

Seen something you like in our catalogue?

Find the perfect gift and save up to R5000 – As seen on the catalogue. Hurry and shop now!

Save up to R2200 on electronics! – As seen in the catalogue

Wishing for tech gadgets this festive? Save up to R2100 on hot tech products at kalahari.com. While stocks last. Shop now!

Up to 35% off books

Save up to 35% on the latest page-turners. While stocks last. Shop now!

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

There is a strong desire to be unique, self sufficient, right and in control today. Your mind is fast today and you may have the...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.