Somalia: Puntland warns of conflict along Somaliland border
GAROWE, Puntland - Puntland state has warned against ongoing security crisis along the border with Somaliland, which has often caused rifts between Garowe and Hargeisa, with both parties claiming territories in Sanaag and Sool, which are located in the far north.
For the past few months, heavy fighting has been recorded in Shidan town along the border where two clans have been fighting against each other the territorial dispute, leading to an adverse humanitarian crisis, which has affected thousands.
Previously, Puntland had accused Somaliland of deploying security forces in the region, arguing that such measures will escalate the conflict. Somaliland claims the region from the larger Somalia, thus leading to the impasse.
Jama Deperani, the spokesperson for Puntland State House asked both parties to showcase restraint as traditional elders try to solve the matter at hand. The elders, he noted, have been working on the matter for several months now.
"We are calling on Somaliland not to escalate the conflict between the two clans in Shidan town of Sanaag region. We also appealing on the residents to maintain peace and stop fighting, leave the consolidated task to the traditional elders who are already working on it," he noted.
Somaliland declared independence from Somalia in 1991 after years of civil war and genocide that was perpetrated by former military general Siad Barre. The region has been running a parallel government but it's yet to be recognized by the international community.
Meanwhile, Puntland has rejected claims that an aircraft was turned away from Gara'ad airport. Mohamed Abdirahman Farole, a senior security advisor to Puntland President Said Abdullahi Deni, termed the claim as "baseless and misleading" in a tweet on Tuesday.
"There is NO plane turned away from Gara'ad airport or denied permission to land. This is baseless and misleading information. Puntland is closely following the termed-ended FGS leaders' plot to destabilize the region," the advisor said.