Over the past months security forces from Somaliland and Puntland have conducted several successful operations against violent extremist groups in Sanaag Mountains straddling the two authorities.
Starting in mid October, operations began in Puntland to eliminate a terrorist stronghold in Cal-Madow mountain range, Bari region. Puntland troops launched attacks against extremists fighting for a local al-Shabab leader named Mohamed Said Atom, who wants to destabilize northern Somalia on behalf of Al-Qaeda. After several days of intense fighting, the Puntland forces succeeded in overtaking Atomâ€™s key logistic hub in the region. Several vehicles, weapons, and bomb-making materials were seized during the raid.
Atom has a long history of criminality in Puntland and Somaliland. His practices include arms dealing, kidnapping, and indiscriminate bombings and represent a direct threat to the safety and security of all communities in Northern Somalia. The operation was a big success and disrupted terror activity in the Galgala area. As the area becomes increasingly secure, it should open the door to future development.
It is evident that the Somaliland and Puntland leaders understand that security threats from extremists like Al-Shabaab are serious impediments to the development of these areas.
Somalia Information Minister, Abdirahman Omar Osman (Eng. Yarisow), said:
â€œThe Somali Government stands with their brothers and sisters in Somaliland and Puntland in their resistance to violent extremism. The people of northern Somalia have worked long enough for a safe environment in which to improve their lives and the lives of future generations. We will support their impressive efforts to establish peace and stability in these regions.â€
Ministry of Information