Djibouti president receives SSC-Khatumo leader

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DJIBOUTI - After days of distancing itself from the alleged role of destabilizing the Somaliland regional state, Djibouti has hosted leaders of the SSC-Khatumo. This group is pushing for its independence and establishing of social order in northern Somalia.

The SSC-Khatumo leadership broke ranks with Somaliland leadership, following a massacre in Las Anod, one of the cities affected by violence. The leadership has since been pushing for the creation of a new state within Somalia which is answerable to Mogadishu.

On Monday, President Ismail Omar Guelleh of Djibouti was pictured with SSC-Khatumo leader Abdikhadir Ahmed Aw Ali Firdhiye. This comes after weeks of speculations that the leadership was indeed hosted in Djibouti, a claim that had been denied.

The two discussed the general situation in SSC-Khatumo regions with peace and stability topping the agenda. The region is recovering from an economic downturn following months of war with Somaliland, a state that is not only fighting for independence but also claiming SSC-Khatumo regions.

Firdhiye, who is on a working visit to Djibouti, expressed his gratitude for the warm welcome extended by the Djibouti people and government to the SSC-Khatumo delegation. According to a statement from the SSC administration, he praised the Djibouti government's role in building the Somali government and enhancing regional security cooperation.

Djibouti has been pushing for the stabilization of Somalia and has before reciprocated by sending troops to the country under the African Union Transition Mission in Somalia (ATMIS) umbrella. SSC regions comprise of Sool, Sanaag, and Ayn.

The government of Djibouti has repeatedly denied involvement in the Las Anod conflict, with IIyas Musa Dawaleh, the minister of finance in Djibouti, accusing Somaliland of 'fueling unfair speculations'.

Last week, Somaliland leader Muse Bihi Abdi accused Djibouti of hosting members of the Awdal State Movement (ASM), which opposes Somaliland's self-declared independence and advocates for the unity of Greater Somalia.

Djibouti denied the claims understandably so given that it has been fighting for the unity of Somalia. Somaliland had signed an agreement with Ethiopia that gives Addis Ababa 20 kilometers of access to the Red Sea in exchange for recognition of Somaliland as a sovereign state.

GAROWE ONLINE

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