8 Feb. (EUROPA PRESS) –
The President of Somalia, Hasan Sheikh Mohamud, has called for a peaceful solution to the recent clashes in the city of Las Anod between troops from the semi-autonomous region of Somaliland and local forces, which have left nearly 25 dead and around 80,000 displaced. , prompting the United Nations to call for an “impartial” investigation.
The president has asked the parties in conflict to put an end to the confrontations to open a dialogue process and has conveyed his condolences to the families of the victims, while stressing that the will of the population “cannot be stolen at gunpoint”, referring to the security operations of the Somaliland forces, according to the Somali Guardian news portal.
The clashes broke out over the weekend and have included the use of heavy weapons, according to witnesses quoted by the Goobjoog News portal, which added that they have also spread to other areas of the Sool and Sanaag regions. The fighting has so far resulted in 24 deaths and around 50 wounded, according to the latest estimates.
The incidents came hours after regional clan leaders claimed they were loyal to federal authorities and stressed they would abide by the constitution, sparking criticism from Somaliland authorities, who have accused militants of attacking a military base in Las Anod. and they have directly targeted the leaders of these clans as responsible for the attacks against their forces in recent weeks.
The city of Las Anod has also been the scene of demonstrations since the end of December to demand that the Somaliland authorities give up their claims on the town, whose control it acquired some 15 years ago, characterized in part by the forced expulsion of more than 7,200 Somalis in recent months.
The protests are primarily targeting Somaliland’s president, Muse Bihi Abdi, whom they accuse of orchestrating political assassinations against his rivals and clinging to power with an illegitimate term, which ended in December, with no elections held so far.” for technical reasons,” according to authorities.
The vote was scheduled for November 13, 2022, a month before the end of the president’s term, in a call to the polls that was considered a milestone for a territory that has spent decades trying to obtain international recognition after declaring its independence from the rest of Somalia in 1991.