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Bristolian MP Kerry McCarthy Calls On UK Government To Recognize Somaliland
Bristol , January 12, 2006 (This is Bristol / Evening Post) – Bristol MP Kerry McCarthy is calling on the Government to recognize the Republic of Somaliland after intensive lobbying from community leaders in the city. Ms McCarthy wants ministers to champion the case of the self-declared republic on the world stage and increase aid to its impoverished population.
There are between 7,000 and 10,000 Somalis living in mainly the Barton Hill, Easton and St Paul 's areas of Bristol - many of whom are originally from Somaliland . These areas are in Ms McCarthy's Bristol East constituency.
Somaliland unilaterally declared itself independent from Somalia after the country descended into a devastating civil war in 1991.
The republic established a reputation for peace and stability - in contrast to the rest of Somalia - but remains unrecognized by other governments or the United Nations.
International recognition would lead to more inward investment and aid from other countries.
Ms McCarthy agreed to take up the issue after she met a delegation of Bristol Somali leaders including Kayse Maxamed, editor of the Somali Voice newspaper, and Mustafah Mahmood, vice-chair of Support Somaliland, in Westminster .
Speaking after the meeting, the MP said:
"There is a real need for aid, development work and support for the government there.
"It seems to me there has got to be some move inter nationally.
"There should be recognition of its independence - or at the very least an EU position on this.
"The EU could change its position to 'We think Somaliland should be recognized'.
"We have a situation here where the people of the country want fully recognized independence.
"However, because of other issues in Somalia , the priorities of that government are elsewhere." Voters in Somaliland elected MPs in September - the first time since the territory declared independence 14 years ago.
The following are comments by readers of the Bristol-based Evening Post newspaper’s website: www.thisisbristol.co.uk
Well done Kerry McCarthy. UK is the only hope that Somaliland has. And all Somaliland needs is a country, which is member of the UN, to take Somaliland ’s case to the Security Council. And the UK is well positioned to do this job. Also, most of Somaliland ’s political and business leaders are mainly British citizens. I believe Somaliland is country that we can use as an example for many other African countries to uphold the Universal Declaration of Human rights. Lets us all push for getting the EU and the UN treating Somaliland as normal nation.
Thanks a lot ms McCarthy ...how is nicely it will be for us if we get a full recognition from the commonwealth countries. Any development we want is absticated by the lack of international recognition so plz the common house members do your best and bring this issue in the general assambly of the UN ...... thanks Ms McCarthy
Sir Ahmed_Hezz adam , New Delhi . India
I guess Ms Kerry McCarthy MP has secured her vote from Somalilanders, but I have to make one thing clear to you people, Somalia will always be one country, one nation and one religion for today and tomorrow and for ever, don’t let this politicians fool you whose after only your votes, stick with your people and stop all this nonsense, Somaliland is not fit to be a country itself in sector economic infrastructure to its environmental. Somalia will always be Somaliweyn forever?. Thank you, and sorry for the disappointment Tagane
Tagane , USA
Dear MP Kerry McCarthy, Thank you Very Much for your Support for Somaliland . The Majority of Somali Community in Bristol are from Somaliland and they are Very Glad about your Support. Please keep doing your great Support and don’t' listen the Tiny Minority From South Somalia who are against democratic and peaceful Somaliland . VIVA Somaliland . Suleiman Jama Easton . Bristol
Suleiman Jama, Bristol.UK
MP Kerry McCarthy, we all thank you for taking the time out of your busy schedule to do what is right. Somaliland needs a recognition from the world community/nations. Thank you for being a friend to my people and its country. Peace Rashid Behi
Abdulrashid Behi , USA
I extend my sincere gratitude to my PM Kerry McCarty who has been very be supportive for the recognition of Somaliland . This will be a great support for the Somalilanders all around the world. Vivo Somaliland. Abdi Bristol
Saeed, Easton Bristol
Thanks A Million to You, Ms McCarthy. It's not blind recognition for Somaliland, it's the renewal of that recognition made by Great Britain on the 26th of June 1960. On that day Great Britain gave Somaliland full independence credentials without any hesitations. I don't see any reason why the United Kingdom would not renew that recognition NOW. We do not hate our brothers & sisters in Somalia , but we can not wait for them forever, until they establish similar peace & security in their sectors. They have along way to go, till they reach the same level as we have now. We have done a lot in the past 15+ years. We have to look after ourselves first, and make a good governing systems for our people, to leave something for the young generations. Once again, thanks A Million To You, Ms Kerry McCarthy. May God bless Bristol , and the Great UK.
Omer Ahmed Hassan, Brooklyn Park , Minnesota , USA
Thank you Mp Kerry McCarthy for your fighting Somaliland to be recognized by the rest of world. It's time the world should recognized the people of Somaliland .
Abdi Haid, Minneasota - USA
The Hon MP may have understood the urgency for the two countries to separate as different entities just as before the 26th June 1960. However, many people in the South need to be re-educated since they have no knowledge of how the " Somali Republic " came to be born from "La Somalia del Italia". Somalia 's problem began in 1960 when the British part joined the South on the 1st of July only to be forced to integrate as just another Tribal group than a different country with its own Parliament. Since the British part destroyed its own Parliament, flag for the Southern state, the road to destruction has been a constant which has seen two attempts to overthrow the Southern rule. I M Lewis said: From the early 1980s, the north was administered by increasingly harsh local population who were subject to severe economic, as well as political harassment. The north, as I saw when I last visited it in 1985, began to look and feel like a colony under a foreign military tyranny (Lewis, 1990:58).The African Union and Italy has continuously been running a destructive system of "divide and conquer" by the use of tribalist systems such as this current transitional government built with the 4.5(Daarood, Hawiye, Dir, Digil & Mirifle, and others) while at the same time trying to legalize a federal system based on tribal borders without respecting smaller tribes. If tribal Federalism has not worked in other African countries, there should not be reasons why it should work for Somalis. Otherwise the disaster will just continue.The answer to Somalia ’s problem is the urgency to the treatment and solutions to Somaliland . The UN, AU and the Common Wealth should at least offer Somaliland as an observer nation. Somaliland maybe dominated by one ethnic group, but that ethnic group has done nothing but contributed positively to enhancing Africa ’s image. We should congratulate them instead of being hindrance to their progress.
Ahmed Deria, Ceelbuur , Somalia
I am very pleased to hear that from now on Somaliland will be part of the wider international community, something we have been waiting for a longtime.
Musa , England
I would like to thank the honorable MP McCarthy for her efforts to put Somaliland on the world map. In fact Somaliland deserves more than that.The Somaliland people in general demand from the British government to do more by putting the Somaliland case in the world political stage like UN security council and EU and the Commonwealth. Somaliland expects from the British government practical support rather than words. We request from the British government to increase the economic aid package to Somaliland .
Dr Abdul hakim sheikh, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Viva somaliland viva somaliland
Asal Somalilander, Oslo , Norway
Somaliland has achieved its independence from Britain while Somalia was still an Italian Colony. Somaliland has not violated both UN and AU Charters by withdrawing from Somalia as it was an independent country that had been already recognized by some 38 countries, including Britain and USA . It is a high time that Britain should recognize Somaliland without prior conditions.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank and congratulate Ms McCarthy for taking a bold and courageous step which is really needed by the people of Somaliland . Ms McCarthy by taking this initiative, by trying to help Somaliland people to have their God given right of self determination and sovereign recognition. Kudos to you honorable MP. You really have touched our hearts. Somaliland is a nation that exist in reality, it is functioning polity with all ingredients needed for any state to exist. The only thing missing is the international recognition. It is my sincere hope that Great Britain will be the first nation to pave the way, by being the first country to grant Somaliland recognition. One thing I will like to remind the international community is we the people of Somaliland are highly determine and resilient. We have managed to pull our country out of unfathomable crisis. We have built a modern and democratic nation state. We Somalilanders are determined to make our country into an African Hong Kong or Singapore . The only obstacle facing us is the issue of recognition which will help our hope and dreams to be realize sooner rather than later. Somaliland will become an African economical tiger. Long live Somaliland, Long live Great Britain .
Nasir Omar Hirsi, London UK
Ms Kerry McCarty. You have no right to divide Somalia , You have no knowledge of Somali Politics, Can you define what is Somaliland ? the Current Somaliland is one tribe, called Isaq and One tribe can't be a government, Somalia was victimized by the British. Your days are over Somalians will decide by their own. As far as your local election in Bristol is concerned, you lost the votes of the majority of Somalians. Before advocating some thing you don't know try to read the history of former British Somaliland . You need more knowledge about the subject.
Abdulle Hilowle Yalahow, Bristol
Let me take the opportunity to thank Mp Kerry McCarthy for her remarkable call to put Somaliland on the map. All Somaliland did was ending a dreadful unity with hopeless state and should not be penalized for that. It is up to the Somalilanders around the globe to act now to make sure Somaliland is on the map. Somaliland is already Africa ’s Best Kept Secret and will remain so in the future. Long live Somaliland forever.
Mubarik Ahmed Ibrahim, London , UK
I would like to offer my sincere gratitude and appreciation for the effort that the right honorable lady Ms Kerry McCarthy has put to and the time she has spent on the issues relating to the recognition of Somaliland . And also I would like to thank my dear friend Mustafe Abdi Gamuute for lobbying the recognition of Somaliland . Great Britain has been reluctant for a long time to raise the idea of recognizing Somaliland within the EU for various reasons whiles Italy was openly advocating not to recognize Somaliland since Somalia was former Italian colony. I would also like to encourage other Somaliland communities to contact their MPs in regarding the recognition of Somaliland . Let us make 2006 the YEAR of REGONITION of Somaliland.Viva Somaliland.
Ahmed Mohamed AliSalan, Welwyn Garden City , UK
Thanks to the MP for her smart suggestion of recognizing Somaliland . But we, the Somaliland People, need to do more about our state of governanace and democracy to be well-prepared for an international recognition. Somaliland should introduce clear economic, social and political schemes and plans to better develop with its miniature resources. Mismanagement, corruption and incompetent and uneducated ministers should be removed from the scene.We most also try to convince the South/Somalia to accept Somaliland's independence as Eritrea did when gaining independence from Ethiopia . Wish my people a better future.
Mohamed Esse Yousuf, Hargeysa, Somaliland
Many thanks MP Kerry McCarthy for her active role. It’s great to see a parliamentarian who recognizes change and prosperity. Somaliland needs to be recognized to further it’s improvements and by parliamentarians like Mp Kerry Somaliland would obtain what it’s been looking for RECOGNITION!!.
Dr; Abdi Ibrahim Hassan , Melbourne Australia
I think it is the time our Somalia government to recognized Somaliland . Hope our Minister Mr. Geedi is very serious about recognizing Somaliland . There is so many Somali intellectuals who has sympathy and support for Geedi about the recognizing of Somaliland . Now they make even their country democratic. Please recognize Somaliland so we Somalis can focus our own problems. Thanks Ms McCarthy.
Dr Ali Alasow, Mogadishu
British Somalilanders will’ not forget MP McCarthy and other MPs who are interested in recognition of Somaliland when they need their votes.
Abdi Suudi, CARDIFF .UK
Firstly, i would like to express my great thankfulness and appreciation for Mp Kerry McCarthy for her genuine and warm sympathy with the case of Somaliland people. I would like also to extend my thanks to the Somaliland community in Bristol for their remarkable effort. Although the 'recognition' is long awaited, yet, in my opinion the most effective way to win this case is copying the Bristol community example. In other words, Somalilanders in diaspora should be on the front line of campaigning for our full independence. I say this for two reasons, firstly, we are all aware of the nature of those who are in charge in Somaliland and there reality, thus no one should think that they can even defend their territorial borders, let alone bringing recognition!. secondly, the democratic approach in our country is not fully developed. The bottom line is, those who are in diaspora, Europe or else where, who have access to decision making centers should initiate and sustain the effort for gaining international recognition.
Mustafe Hussein Yusuf,, Melaka , Malaysia .
Thanks to the MP Miss McCarthy, however I believe we the Somalilanders in the diaspora should acknowledge the fact that it is the efforts and lobbying of the Somaliland community in Bristol that has enabled the mp to address the issue of Somaliland ’s recognition. Hence my view is they deserve to be thanked and congratulated for their work. and last but not the least it should encourage all the Somaliland communities in different parts of the world to do what Bristol residents did, it is about time Somalilanders in the diaspora used the conventional methods of persuading their host nations to recognize Somaliland
Salah Ahmed Jama, Ottawa Canada
Many thanks Ms McCarthy for supporting the people of Somaliland in their attempt to achieve their rightful position in the international community by getting their long overdue recognition. Now you started it please keep up the good work. As a Somalilanders I very much convinced more than ever before that with a little push through the proper channels recognition is not only a possibility but achievement of it is guaranteed. Ms McCarthy your good name will feature in the list of the international prominent figures that have championed for our noble cause. Thanks again. Mohamoud Egeh.
Egeh, Abu Dhabi
Thanks to Bristol MP Kerry McCarthy and her initiative. Ahmed from Bossaso Puntland
Ahmed Jama, Bossaso, Puntland
Your excellences, Bristol MP, Kerry McCarthy. My best wishes and regards to you, thank you for your comments related to the recognition of beloved Somaliland , please continue your efforts.
Yusuf Janale, Oslo , Norway .
Ms McCarthy you said the right word at the right time. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. God will bless you for fighting for the right of the Somalilanders.
Adam Ahmed, C a n a d a
I thank you so much for publishing this wonderful article we as a Somalilanders will remember. Also I want to thank MP Ms Kerry for her support.
Adan Farax Ibrahim, Toronto , Canada
I congratulate Ms McCarthy for her braveness, for taking the first step to pressure the UK Government to recognize Somaliland, comments like this were overdue, and am sure they will make many Somalilanders and their friends happy, while, many Somaliland enemies wont be soo happy!!, it was clear Somaliland had many friends in UK, who were lobbying for Somaliland recognition, but its good to see they are coming out in public and saying what is the right thing, that is, to recognize Somaliland. UK Government and its people should always remember what Somaliland had done for them, and how they supported when GB needed them most, many Somaliland men shed their blood and fought with GB, now its time UK returns the favor, I thank Ms McCarthy for her effort and urge other MPs to follow her lead. The African countries should also be pressured to recognize Somaliland , since they have to take the first step. Thanks Ms McCarthy and everyone else who supports Somaliland .
Ahmed , Australia
It's long over due for Great Britain to take the lead and recognize the Republic of Somaliland . It's really an encouraging sign if MPs Like Ms McCarthy start campaigning for the recognition of Republic Of Somaliland . Thanks.
Abdillahi Gedi, Ottawa , Canada
It is way over due the recognition of Somaliland as a sovereign state. This country has gone through three elections in a matter of four years and that is impressive in East African standard, where elections are marred with violence and frauds. It is about time Europe starts supporting working nations and reward good governance.
Yassin, Stockholm , Sweden
Somaliland has been completely ignored by the Middle East but I am so impressed by the comment made Bristol MP Kerry McCarthy and I fully support her. In 1960 Somaliland had recognized borders and was recognized by 35 Nations but later reunited with Somalia . Somaliland is to day a stabile and peacefully country. God bless Somaliland .
All I can say is thanks to the MP and the many friends of Somaliland in GB.
Rashiid , USA
I very much welcome the support of Ms Kerry McCarthy MP towards Somaliland and especially with regard to the recognition issue. I’m absolutely delighted to see the growing number of British MPs who are now publicly calling the British government, EU and the International Community to recognize the Republic of Somaliland . I do agree the honorable lady on her comment regarding the position of the EU towards the diplomatic recognition of Somaliland . I believe it is very important that the EU’s wait and see policy towards Somaliland should be changed. The EU should take a proactive role in the lobbying front for the recognition of Somaliland . Even though I personally believe that the UK should take the lead, since a number of EU countries are now openly saying African countries should take the lead. If that is the case, they should change their current stand to ‘we think Somaliland should be recognized’ as the MP has put it. If the EU takes the advice of Ms McCarthy it will of course encourage and urge African countries to take the lead and grant recognition to Somaliland . As a Somalilander living in the UK , I’m very grateful to Ms McCarthy for her support to Somaliland . Thank you so much.
Nuradin Mohamed Abdi, Cardiff , Wales
I support these comments it is really confounding that GB has not recognized this former colony because of EU politics. Somaliland deserves to be recognized because it fulfills every international legal principal on self-determination. It is also a pathfinder with regards to democracy in a troubled Horn of Africa. Thanks
Dhimbiil , Canada Ottawa)