Somaliland is a former British protectorate. It gained independence in 1960 and was recognised as an independent state. However, acting on the desire at the time of Somalis to live in one state, Somaliland voluntarily joined with Italy’s former Somali colony to form the Republic of Somalia. The union turned out to be disastrous for Somaliland, as the people found themselves marginalised in the new state. In 1969 Siyad Barre overthrew the government of Somalia in a coup and began a policy of calculated repression of the people of Somaliland. When the Somali National Movement stepped up its armed resistance to Barre’s oppressive regime in Somaliland in the late 1980s, the armed forces of Somalia bombed Somaliland, completely destroying the capital Hargeisa, killing an estimated 50,000 people and displacing another 500,000.
In 1991, after the fall of the Barre regime and the total collapse of the Somali Republic, Somaliland resolved to re-constitute itself as an independent State. Since then it has established and sustained peace and stability and held parliamentary and presidential elections. Somaliland therefore stands in stark contrast to south-central Somalia, which remains a failed state without an effective government, plagued by a series of disastrous humanitarian crises. Somalilanders are united in their desire to live in an independent state and are strongly opposed to any union with Somalia.
Somaliland meets the established criteria for recognition as a state. It has a permanent population, a defined territory, a functioning government and capacity to enter into relations with other states in the international community. Its achievements have won widespread praise and its case for recognition has been favourably assessed by the African Union Commission, the conflict prevention NGO International Crisis Group as well as the security and development policy think tank The Senlis Council. Itherefore request the authorities to kindly to form a commission who can recommend and recognized this peaceful country from the United Nations and from the rest of the world, situated in the horn of Africa. Many countries got their recognition but the Republic of Somaliland is waiting for its recognization. And WHY NOT REPUBLIC OF SOMALILAND? “The State as a person of international law should possess the following qualifications:
- a permanent population;
- a defined territory;
- government; and
- capacity to enter into relations with the other states.”
Somaliland unequivocally meets each of these established legal criteria.
1. A permanent population
- The Republic of Somaliland has a population of approximately 3.5 million. Its capital Hargeisa has a permanent estimated at 1.1 million.
- The nomadic nature of many of Somaliland’s inhabitants, and the consequent flow of the population in and out of the territory, has no impact on the legal definition of permanent population.
2. A defined territory
- The British protectorate established clearly defined borders for Somaliland by treaties in the 19th century. These borders were confirmed upon Somaliland’s declaration of independence in 1960.
- The contestation of the eastern border does not invalidate statehood.
3. Effective government
- Somaliland has a central government which exercises effective control over the majority of its territory. It has held internationally recognised free and fair election, most recently in June 2010, and has effective government institutions including a constitution approved by a popular vote, a democratically elected President, national parliament, local governments, and an independent judiciary.
4. Capacity to enter into relations with other States
- Despite its unrecognised status, Somaliland has entered into informal and formal relationships with a number of other states, including the United Kingdom, Sweden, the United States, Djibouti, Ethiopia and Kenya. It has also achieved de facto recognition from a number of other nations around the world.
Achievements against all the odds
1. Economic advancement
- Over two decades, Somaliland has built a successful market economy, with GDP rising to $350 per capita – higher than Tanzania ($280), Eritrea ($190) and Ethiopia ($100).
- Somaliland’s private sector has enjoyed sustained growth, catalysed by low levels of regulation and a comparatively small government bureaucracy. A number of government services, such as vehicle licensing, are delivered through local businesses.
- Total Somaliland central government income has increased over the last few years and is expected to be $147m this year (2012). This is still very small for the needs of the country but the increase shows a steady improvement in revenue collection for public services.
- Somaliland is notable for its thriving livestock export. In 2011, 3.1 million sheep/goats and 257,000 cattle/camels were exported to the Middle East. Livestock remain the mainstay of Somaliland’s economy.
- There is a thriving services sector, which hosts a number of major international businesses, includingDaallo airlines, which operates across the world, and the Dahabshiil money transfer company, the largest in the region.
- Somaliland boasts a highly competitive telecoms industry, providing mobile and landline services that are among the cheapest in Africa.
- In 2010, Somaliland Beverage Industries made the country’s single biggest investment to date – opening a $17 million Coca-Cola production facility to supply the region. The factory has plans to expand into producing Dasani water and Minute Maid juices in 2013.
- Confidence in the country is reflected in the return of tens of thousands of people from the diaspora. Fifteen out of 32 Cabinet and Ministerial positions in the current administration are made up of Somalilanders who have returned from abroad. Somaliland is moving to develop what is estimated to be highly significant hydrocarbon reserves in the country.
- A 2D seismic survey of offshore Somaliland, consisting of 5,100 KM of modern seismic data (and an on-shore program of 34,600 kilometres of aeromagnetic data collection) was undertaken in 2008/9. Three international companies have signed Production Sharing Agreements with the government and are involved in early-stage surveying.
- Airborne survey and 2D Seismic surveying in Togdher Region will begin in December 2012 by Genel Energy.
- The first exploratory drilling programmes are expected to start in early 2014
- Somaliland is in the process of exploiting proven reserves of iron, manganese and coal.
- Minerals and Mining Ltd, a Swiss company, has signed an agreement with the government to mine minerals in the country.
- Somaliland will start producing in mid-2013, exporting an estimated half a million tonnes within five years.
- Nubian Gold of Canada is currently prospecting for various minerals in the Maroodijeex/Gabley region.
- Somaliland receives significant remittances from the diaspora, valued at about $800 million annually.
- Somaliland has quietly emerged as a reliable trading post along the Gulf of Aden, which World Bank Africa Region Chief Economist Shanta Devarajan has hailed as a “success story” in Africa. The World Bank has assisted in the recent production of “Doing Business in Hargeisa”. The report comments that despite conflict and fragility in the surrounding region, the “relative peace and security in Hargeisa in the past decade has allowed a vibrant private sector to develop” and “that the government has made strides setting up some of the institutions and rules necessary for businesses to operate”.
- Somaliland is connected to the rest of the world by Berbera airport, which has one of the longest runways in Africa as well as Hargeisa International Airport, which is undergoing extensive modernisation. The country has made profitable deals with international companies such as Ethiopian Airlines.
- Berbera port already serves imports and exports to and from Somaliland as well as the neighbouring countries of Ethiopia and Somalia.
- Tourism is a potential growth industry, with historic towns, offshore islands and coral reefs providing major attractions.
2. Peace and security
- Somaliland co-operates willingly with its neighbours and the international community in the fight against terrorism by sharing information about potential threats, enforcing a UN arms embargo against Somalia and policing its own territory.
- Somaliland’s constitution is unique in committing the state and nation to combatting terrorism “regardless of motives”.
- Somaliland has effectively tackled piracy along its coastline, ensuring that the waters off Somaliland’s coast are largely free from pirate attacks. Nearly 90 pirates are currently in prison in Hargeisa.
- Somaliland has demobilised clan militia, integrating them into unified police and military forces in the early 1990s.
- Somaliland has removed and destroyed tens of thousands of landmines
- During the war, it is estimated that a million mines were planted in Somaliland, making it “among the most mine-polluted territories on the planet”.
3. Democratic governance
- In 2002, 2003, 2005, and 2010 Somaliland held local government, presidential and parliamentary elections monitored by international observers – “all of which were largely free and fair.”
- Somaliland has seen peaceful transfers of power during all its elections, including the 2003 Presidential election, which was won with a wafer-thin majority of 227 votes – one of the closest ever margins in an African Presidential contest.
- Somaliland has established a highly progressive constitution, which entrenchesthe separation of power between the three arms of government, balances representative democracy with traditional governance institutions, ensures the existence of active opposition political parties and a free and pluralistic media.
- Somaliland has developed a unique form of governance that could serve as a model for state-building in other parts of the world.Somaliland has proved that traditional social systems can be fused successfully with modern democratic principles to create popular and sustainable governments.
- After winning independence, the Somali National Movement worked to establish a civilian representative government. In so doing it has been credited as “one of the few movements in contemporary African history to have effectively dealt themselves out of power.”
Other Countries Newly Recognized:
Thirteen other countries became independent through a variety of causes.
- March 21, 1990 – Namibia became independent of South Africa.
- May 22, 1990 – North and South Yemen merged to form a unified Yemen.
- October 3, 1990 – East Germany and West Germany merged to form a unified Germanyafter the fall of the Iron Curtain.
- September 17, 1991 – The Marshall Islands was part of the Trust Territory of Pacific Islands (administered by the United States) and gained independence as a former colony.
- September 17, 1991 – Micronesia, previously known as the Caroline Islands, became independent from the United States.
- January 1, 1993 – The Czech Republic and Slovakia became independent nations when Czechoslovakia dissolved.
- May 25, 1993 – Eritrea was a part of Ethiopia but seceded and gained independence.
- October 1, 1994 – Palau was part of the Trust Territory of Pacific Islands (administered by the United States) and gained independence as a former colony.
- May 20, 2002 – East Timor (Timor-Leste) declared independence from Portugal in 1975 but did not became independent from Indonesia until 2002.
- June 3, 2006 – Montenegro was part of Serbia and Montenegro (also known as Yugoslavia) but gained independence after a referendum.
- June 5, 2006 – Serbia became its own entity after Montenegro split.
- Febraury 17, 2008 – Kosovo unilaterally declared independence from Serbia.
- July 9, 2011 – South Sudan peacefully seceded from Sudan following a January 2011 referendum. Sudan itself was the first to recognize South Sudan and did so one day early, on July 8, 2011.
Kindly look into the long pending matter and recognized this stable, peaceful country situated in the horn of africa.
Thanking you. Sincerely yours.
Please sign the Peition. for Recognizing Republic of Somaliland
Pétition adressée à :
Secretary Gen. United Nations, African Union, President USA,Prime Minister UK, European Union, Secretary General Ban Ki-moon United Nations
Chairperson, African Union Organization
Honorable President Obama, White House Government, USA
Secretary General United Nations, African Union Organization, President United States of America,Prime Minister UK, European Union