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Aid Agency In Somaliland Freezes Work

Issue 299
Front Page
Index
Headlines

Somaliland Ministers Meet Former Puntland Security Minister In Sool

Somaliland Livestock Exporters Ship Thousands Of Animals From ‘Unofficial’ Sea Ports

Aid Agency In Somaliland Freezes Work

Somaliland Denies Having Talks With Puntland Over Disputed Sool Region

Somaliland Republic Postpones Elections

Somaliland's Political Parties Sign An Accord To Reschedule Elections To 2008

Political Crisis In Somaliland Develop Into Casualties

The Two Gentlemen--and that Third One

Splits Developing In Somali Insurgency

From Cocaine To Plutonium: Mafia Clan Accused Of Trafficking Nuclear Waste To Somalia

Two Ethiopian soldiers killed in suicide attack near Somali PM

Somaliland MP seeks GCC ties

Ethiopia's 'secret war' forces thousands to flee

Regional Affairs

Puntland Ex-Minister Surrenders To Somaliland

Somali Army General, Others Assassinated In Somali Capital, Says U.N. Agency

Editorial
Special Report

International News

Ex-commander calls Iraq effort 'a nightmare'

Blunt Talk About Iraq at Army School

Abdirahman dominates USA Men’s 10 Mile Championship

Gates backs Army’s plans to speed up growth, encourages improved guerrilla tactics training

FEATURES & COMMENTARY

The veteran suffers

Tracing angels' footsteps in ancient Ethiopia

The UN Security Council an underrepresented lot that needs reforms

Saudis Host Conference To Support Pro-US Regime In Somalia, As Opposition Groups Meet In Asmara

1559 shipwreck found off Pensacola, Fla.

Eritrea: Border Row Threatens Terrorism War

Prime Minister Meles says U.S. bill is “not fair”

Maternal Mortality Shames Superpower U.S

Food for thought

Opinions

Maternal Mortality Shames Superpower U.S

Creating The Necessary Conditions For Somaliweyn

Democracy Requires Delegation And Decentralized Work

Xaabsade Is Not Welcome In Somaliland

Somalia: Where Is The Nation Of Poets?

Why Somalis Fail To Integrate In The West?

The Formula of Death: from 1884 Berlin Conference to 2007 Mogadishu Reconciliation Meeting

The Last Ten Nights Of Ramadan


A market in Hergeisa, Somaliland (2006 photo)
A livestock market in Hargeysa, Somaliland

By Nick Wadhams

Nairobi, October 11, 2007 – One of the last foreign aid agencies working in the republic of Somaliland in East Africa has suspended operations because of tension between Somaliland and its neighbor, Puntland. As Nick Wadhams reports from Nairobi, clashes between the two sides have killed several people in recent weeks.

The German aid agency German Agro Action says it has withdrawn three of its foreign staffers from projects across Somaliland because of the rising tensions between the two sides over their disputed border.

In late September, clashes between Somaliland and Puntland over the town of Las Anod killed at least 10 people. People in Puntland have also reported that radio stations were broadcasting music that encouraged people to take up arms and fight.

Last week, Puntland claimed to have taken the town, and the clashes diminished. German Agro Action project director Peter Sass says clans in the town have fought each other and sometimes play the two regions off of each other.

"There is a little bit in the area, how should I say, that maybe the people in Las Anod are always playing poker, they look under which conditions they can live better, and so sometimes they like to stay to Somaliland and sometimes they like to be in Puntland," he said. "So they are playing their cards a little bit. But now it came to this point that there was a big movement from the Somaliland side to go there. Last year I was also here and it was not as much as it is now."

Somaliland claims Las Anod and the surrounding region based on borders from the colonial era, while Puntland claims the region because of the clans that live there.

Sass says German Agro Action will review the situation in the coming days and decide whether to return staff to the region. The agency does a range of work, including projects on food security, environment and health.

He says that the two sides are trying to negotiate a peace, and it is his belief that leaders in both regions understand that more skirmishes would only escalate tensions and could lead to a wider war.

"As far as I know, now they are sitting on the table and they try to find a solution for all that," he said. "But my personal feeling is that I think, I hope, that they will find a solution and they are taking the armies back. Because they must know somehow if there will be a clash it will be too big this time, so I think that they will find a solution."

Somaliland is a former British colony that declared independence from Somalia in 1991 soon after Somali dictator Mohamed Siyad Barre was ousted. In the years since, it has become far safer and economically more successful than Somalia, which remains in chaos. Puntland, meanwhile, declared autonomy in 1998, but retains close ties to Somalia. It has struggled to match Somaliland's prosperity.

Source: VOA


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