It was widely presented throughout national, regional and international media how the people of Somaliland dramatically faced droughts which severely affected the lives of the people and their livestock where both of them are dying for starvation and lack of water.
In this regard, Somaliland has sent to the international community urgent appeals in order to save the lives for thousands of people specially the Westerns regions. From this perspective, there were many delegations from various countries and international bodies as United Nations which all shared with their deep concerns and empathy to the people of Somaliland. But Egyptian delegation arrived in the Somaliland did not comment on these outstanding issues of droughts and the remarks of the delegation was reversal at all.
Some countries which are active member in the Arab league particularly Gulf States as UAE, Saudi Arabia, Qadar and Kuwait have already responded this urgent appeal and provided for some assistance to the needy people affected by the droughts. Moreover, the point I want to make is what the Egyptian delegation that arrived in Hargeisa April 5th wants if they are not willing to contribute saving a thousands of people who lost their livestock and at risk to loss also in their lives as well.
The Egyptian delegation did not show any sympathy to the people of Somaliland but they stated in their press statement that they visited what they called a” region “of Somaliland in order to confuse the international views, but the public attention was very doubtful that Egypt will never appreciate the independent of Somaliland.
Many people in the capital city of Hargeisa viewed that Egyptian delegation was pursuing some political agenda but they don’t care about people dying for starvation simply because Egypt still remains its old doctrine of greater Somalia, unity of Somali people in the Horn of Africa and to isolate or constrain the popular decision of the people Somaliland which they effectively determined their sovereignty lost in 1960.
It is obvious that Egypt provides military support to Somalia to destabilize the peace and stability in the Region of the Horn of Africa and prevent the trade avenues between Somaliland and Ethiopia.
On the other hand, many people are also saying why this time Egypt wants if not participating the emergency responses of the droughts. Some unidentified sources stated that Egypt delegation was demanding some strategic areas and the intellectuals debates related in this Egyptian delegation were all indicating pessimistic views due to historical records which Egypt was campaigning to prevent the case of Somaliland to be presented in the Africa Union and Egypt also misinforms the Arab league member states considering the independent of Somaliland. “Egyptian delegation arrives in Somaliland region” The statement released by the Arab Republic of Egypt Ministry of Foreign Affairs was hugely discovered how the resentment of Egypt is deep regarding the case of the Republic of Somaliland. Look this title of the statement:
“Egyptian delegation arrives in Somaliland region.”
This is really a misleading, misunderstanding and misinterpretation because this statement indicated a real political doctrine of the Egypt that the Republic of Somaliland is a region part of Somalia or member of federal government of Somalia and this statement pointed out that the delegation “met the president of the region.” 2 It is undeniable, that this statement revealed how Egypt is one of the longstanding opponent of Somaliland’s case of independent and its remarkable development but Egypt needs to understand that Somaliland is not a region part of Somalia but Somaliland was part of former Somali Republic collapsed in 1991 where Somaliland people decided to withdraw the aborted union in 1960 between Somaliland British Protectorate and Italian Trust Territory of Somalia.
On the other hand, this statement also exposed that the political mentality of Egypt is fixed to the continuation of the proxy war of Egypt and Ethiopia over the control of the blue Nile River where the entire Somali speaking societies had been used before as an instrument of the long term conflict in the Horn of Africa region and these political tensions undermined the development in the region as whole. It is apparent that the Cairo influence in this region of the Horn of Africa inclined the development millstones and many Somali speaking societies had been a long victim in these regional rivalries.
“Foster solidarity with the Somali people in all Somali Regions”
Actually many people have surprised this statement which was the outcome of the delegation visited in the Republic of Somaliland in April 5th 2016. This statement has clearly outlined that Egypt had not yet adopted the dramatic political shifts occurred in the post- Cold War era which reshaped in the international politics from bipolar into unipolar.
On the other hand, the world politics is currently pursuing multipolar political system where many countries are raising and becoming new actors in the global economy and political system. This international political shift had also raised Africa to follow good practices of democracy and regime changes because many dictatorship regimes like Siyad Barre collapsed in 1991 and the rebirth of the Republic of Somaliland coincided this new paradigm shift in the world politics.
To come to the point I want to underscore while Egypt is lobbying and advocating the “solidarity in all Somali regions” enormous people here in Somaliland are questioning what regions that Egypt is talking about. Some of the people I met argued that Egypt has remained a political stagnation and confusion of the failed dream of the greater Somalia in 1960 that supposed to be unifying all Somali speaking societies in the Horn of African region.
But this unification of all Somali territory was a nightmare scenario and political miscalculation which the Egypt was one of the masterminds. However, whether Egypt likes or not Somaliland people reclaimed their misplaced sovereignty in 1960 which later on 97% voted the declaration of the Republic of Somaliland through constitutional referendum in 2001 following local government, presidential and parliamentary elections which international and local observers proved as free and fair elections.
Today, it is unacceptable the Egyptian delegation to say “we met the president of Somaliland region, ministry of the region and “foster the solidarity with the Somali people in all Somali regions.” It is notable that the independence of the Republic of Somaliland has diminished a long term regional hostility and proxy war of Ethiopia and Egypt because today Somalilanders see Ethiopians as their neighbors that they share a lot of interests of trade, security and strategic partnership whilst Ethiopia is landlocked country of 90 million and Somaliland is a coastal state that manages a largest waters of red sea of 800km.
“Within the framework of the Egyptian delegation’s visit to Somalia.”
This is an intentional tendency and clear political underestimation to Somaliland, it is unfortunate that Egyptian delegation even did not say thank you to the government and people of Somaliland who warmly welcomed and took them to visit strategic international Port of Berbera and much tourism sites in Somaliland.
Over the past years many international high level delegations and Fact- Finding Missions from western countries, AU, EU and even the Gulf countries visited in Somaliland and admired how the people of Somaliland succeeded to manage their internal conflicts and established a viable state institutions without much assistance from the international community. Similarly, Somaliland participated and invited many international forums with its capacity and the respect of the unalienable rights of the people of Somaliland.
However, the people of Somaliland believe that Egypt has lost the sight of putting the Somalis into the fire and it will not be possible again to revive the dead slogan of the reunification of the Somali speaking societies aimed at confronting with their neighbors and escalating the long term crisis in the Horn of African region and the long- standing dispute between Ethiopia and Egypt over management of the Nile waters weakened the economic development in the region of the Horn.
In the meantime, it was incredible the Government of Somaliland to entertain such delegation or a country that had never supported the independence and the political aspirations of the people of Somaliland, if Egypt wants Somalia very disintegrated and violent place, this is a Egypt’s political choice but the choice of the people of Somaliland opted is the Republic of Somaliland and again no chance that Egypt can mislead and influence to the people of Somaliland to support its political slogan of defending the blue Nile waters and make the region of the Horn of Africa unstable and backward.
There is a progressing trade relation and strategic partnership between Somaliland and Gulf countries such as Emirates, Saudi Arabia and Kuwait. These Gulf countries are now more pragmatic and using realistic policies of promoting mutual interests between the Republic of Somaliland and Gulf countries, the Republic of Somaliland is located very strategic place in the red sea, historical and full of untapped natural resources.
Hence, if the Egypt wants to create acceptable political atmosphere, Egypt is required to deeply understand why Somaliland people dissolved the union entered in 1960 with Somalia and why Somaliland is more stable and credible international partner where many countries in the world are respecting Somaliland to remain such oasis of peace and security.
Eventually, Egypt needs to follow such sensible international and regional modalities towards the Republic of Somaliland. The general public expressions about this Egyptian delegation created more controversial discussions among social and political spheres.
Some of the people are contending that Egyptian delegation coincided when the Republic of Somaliland and the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia signed trade and transit preliminary agreement which is part of Berbera corridor project.
By: Mohamed Ahmed Mohamoud “Barawaani”