Somaliland: Sool region is still under our control
HARGEISA, Somalia - Somaliland military insists the controversial Sool region is still under its control in the wake of the triumph entry of traditional elder Garad Jama, who was welcomed by an enthusiastic crowd that carried Somali Blue flags, distancing themselves from Somaliland.
Somaliland's military commander Nuh Ismail Tani dismissed claims that they had lost Las Anod, a town that has been witnessing skirmishes for the last couple of months. He insisted that the Sool region was still intact under his command, noting that nobody will push them out.
On Tuesday, the commander maintained that the Somaliland military will continue to patrol the town, adding that there is a need to foster peace and stability within the breakaway region. This is the first time the senior military commander was speaking following skirmishes that had rocked the town.
"We held this press conference to emphasize that Las Anod's security is in the hands of the national army. The cars that welcomed the elders were national army vehicles, "Commander Tani stated while warning troublemakers from inciting citizens against the government of Muse Bihi Abdi.
Somaliland maintained that no vehicle will be allowed to make entry into the troubled town of Las Anod, arguing that the military has come out with strict protocols to avert tensions in the city. Las Anod has been the center of battles for the last few weeks with locals accusing Hargeisa of dictatorship.
Early this month, authorities confirmed that over 20 civilians were killed during protests over the assassination of a youthful politician who was popular among locals. But in return, Somaliland has accused the federal republic of Somalia and Puntland authorities of instigating chaos in the Sool region which is still disputed.
Sool region has been under dispute for several years now with both Somaliland and Puntland claiming ownership. But despite the dispute, Somaliland has been in charge of the region, but locals are pushing to be reinstated to the federal republic of Somalia.