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President Dahir Rayaale






Interim Government Statement on Northern Secession

Mogadishu Radio Mogadishu in Somali

 1700 GMT 26 May 1991


Ali Mahdi


[Statement by the Council of Ministers of the interim government of the Somali Republic issued in Mogadishu on 26 May]


The Somali interim government respects the interests of the Somali people and bases its work on unity, (?reconciliation), and reconstruction and rehabil­itation work in the country. We are aware of the feelings and difficulties that faced the Somali people during the rule of Dictator Mohamed Siyaad Barre.


We all witnessed the destruction that befell the entire northern regions, particularly the towns of Hargeysa, Burco, Gabiley, Sheikh, Ceerigaabo, and others. We also witnessed the destruction of Mogadishu and other towns in the central and southern regions of the country, such as Baydhabo, Gaalkacyo, Beledweyn, and others. The destruction of the northern towns brought deaths, inju­ries, destruction of property, displacement, and refugees who fled to neighboring countries such as Ethiopia and others.


Given that the rule of Siyaad Barre has now ended, it is important that we heal our wounds, rebuild our country, resettle our displaced people, and help create projects and economic development that can raise the living standards and morale of our people. We must do this with the help of brotherly and friendly countries and international agencies.


We would like to invite our brothers, the Somali National Movement [SNM], and the Somali people living in the northern regions to roundtable negotiations to discuss and agree jointly on the meaning of unity in the context of the UN Charter. The Charter respects the interests of a nation and people and does not support the breakup of a homo­geneous society of the same origin. Today we are aware that unity is an issue [words indistinct) of great importance for peace, stability, and development. It is the duty of the SNM leadership and the entire Somali people to help maintain Somali national unity.


The interim government of the Somali Republic is ready to hold talks with the SNM and welcomes its initiatives and desires regarding regional autonomy, which is a political and economic concept with universal acceptance.


We would like to make clear to the Somali people and the world that the northern regions are part and parcel of the Somali Republic. Therefore, the decisions of the SNM leadership aimed at splitting Somalia should be reversed, and these decisions and moves should be considered as being against our national independence and the unity of the country. It is worth stressing that the Sixth Article of the SNM Constitution opposes secession, as is the case with the UN, OAU, and Arab League Charters, of which the Somali Republic is an important member.


Dignity and a better life can only be achieved through national unity. As we know, division results in a broken nation. Therefore, we call on the Somali people to safeguard and maintain national unity and sovereignty. We also call on the SNM leadership to promptly respond to [Djibouti President] Al-Haji Hassan Gouled Apti­don's appeal to all parties concerned to attend a recon­ciliation conference in Djibouti to enable the Somali people to determine their future and destiny.




Many in Northern Somalia Oppose Secession


14 January 1994

The Christian Science Monitor


Ambassador Ahmed Qeybe


 There are a number of misconceptions in the article "Somaliland Leader Looks for Foreign Recognition: the secessionist north jumps into the peace process in southern Somalia in attempt to find support for its cause, “Jan 06, 1994.


First, while the vaunted central government, elected president, and courts in so-called "Somaliland" may exist on paper, they do not exist in substance since they do not enjoy the allegiance of the population of the areas for which unilateral independence is being illegally claimed.


Second, the restoration of a central government has so far eluded Somalia owing to the rivalry between overly ambitious warlords. But once that realizable goal is attained - hopefully in the near future - it will be a central government, not for the south alone, but for the whole country.


Third, thinly disguised attempts to compartmentalize Somalia are doomed to failure because the Somali people will not accept the dismemberment of their country into south and north. Mohamed Ibrahim Egal and his collaborators are dishing out misinformation, namely that Northern Somalia is one entity whose people are united on the issue of secession. Nothing could be further from the truth. In contrast to the secessionist Isak clan, the other clans inhabiting Northern Somalia vehemently oppose the breakup of Somalia and are full participants in the peacemaking process. Northern Somalia should not be confused with the secessionist clan.


Fourth, there are no compelling reasons to hold the referendum Mr. Egal is calling for. Such a step would open a Pandora's box for other African states to suffer the same fate.


Fifth, applying self-determination to an integral part of a sovereign state runs counter to the provisions of the United Nations and Organization of African Unity charters, as well as to the principles of international law. Furthermore, the former British Somaliland protectorate already exercised its right to self-determination in 1960, when it voluntarily and freely joined with ex-Italian Somalia following the independence of the two territories.


A fallacious argument now being put forward in justification of the secessionist agenda is the breakup of the former Soviet Union into a number of internationally recognized sovereign republics; but this only took the process of decolonization to its logical conclusion. Nor is the case of the former Yugoslavia a valid example upon which secessionists' hopes can be pinned.


Ahmed Mohamed Adan [Qeybe], New York,

Former Foreign Minister of Somalia.


© 1994 Christian Science Monitor










Somaliland Flag






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U.N. emergency relief coordinator Egeland meets Somaliland President Dahir Ryale Kahin in Hargeisa.





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