Press Release from MFA,Somaliland
STATEMENT ON THE DIALOGUE BETWEEN SOMALILAND AND SOMALIA
high-level delegation representing the Government of the Republic of Somaliland traveled to Istanbul, Turkey to participate in the next round of talks with the Federal Government of Somalia, as envisaged by the communiqué signed in Djibouti in December 2014 by the Presidents of Somaliland and Somalia. In the lead up to the Istanbul meeting, Somaliland wrote letters of protest to Somalia and Turkey for unilateral actions taken by Somalia which sought to undermine the Dialogue. This included Somalia’s inclusion of officials of Somaliland nationality in its delegation. Both parties had agreed at the outset of the Dialogue process not to include representatives in their respective delegations who originated from the other nation. The delegation representing Somaliland, led by H.E. Mohamed B. Yonis, Minister of Foreign Affairs suspended the Istanbul meeting until the egregious conduct by Somalia was rectified. Moreover, both Somaliland and Somalia agreed during the first Dialogue meeting facilitated by Turkey, which was held in Ankara in April 2013 to “refrain from using inflammatory language and any other act which my put the continuation of the Dialogue at risk.” However, Somalia’s actions on a number of occasions have sought to undermine and jeopardize the continuation of the talks. The conduct complained of includes; (i) the inclusion of officials of Somaliland origin in the delegation representing Somalia, (ii) the continual delays by Somalia to holding the talks, (iii) inflammatory statements and comments made by Somalia about the talks and Somaliland’s status as an independent nation, (iv) Somalia’s reneging of agreements reached in previous rounds of the talks, and (v) the clear lack of desire by Somalia to promote the Dialogue and use it as an opportunity to properly address its future relations with Somaliland. Somaliland has acted in good faith to honour the spirit of the talks. However, in light of the number of challenges that Somaliland has faced during the Dialogue, we have decided to suspend further talks with Somalia until the existing challenges are properly addressed and Somalia demonstrates in its language and behavior that it wishes to take the talks seriously and act in a responsible way in order to achieve an amicable and just resolution in the future relations between Somalia and Somaliland.
Despite Somaliland’s disappointment at the behavior of Somalia throughout the talks and particularly in this last Istanbul meeting, the Somaliland delegation expresses its gratitude to the Government of Turkey for generously hosting both delegations in Istanbul. It is unfortunate that Turkey’s brotherly intentions have been undermined by the violations and intransigence of Somalia.