Somalia Rejects AU Mediation Over ‘Illegal’ Ethiopia-Somaliland MOU

Published: January 18, 2024

Mogadishu – The Somali government has rejected African Union mediation efforts regarding the disputed memorandum of understanding (MOU) signed between Ethiopia and the self-declared Republic of Somaliland biging this year.

Somalia’s acting Foreign Minister Ali Omar Balad

In a press statement released today, Somalia’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs said the MOU violates Somalia’s sovereignty and territorial integrity. The statement was issued in response to a recent African Union Peace and Security Council (AUPSC) meeting on the issue.

“We welcome the affirmation of the AUPSC of the sovereignty, unity and territorial integrity of all member states of the African Union,” the statement said. “On the basis of upholding that principle, Somalia’s sovereignty and territorial integrity has been violated by Ethiopia.”

Ethiopia has signed a deal granting it naval and commercial access to ports along Somaliland’s coast, in exchange for recognition for the breakaway republic’s independence. Somalia insists the northern territory remains part of its sovereign territory.

According to the Somali foreign ministry statement, there is “no space for mediation unless Ethiopia retracts its illegal MOU and reaffirms the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Somalia.”

The statement said Somalia remains open to engagement with the African Union, United Nations, and Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) to build “mutually beneficial” ties “grounded on international law.”

Horseed Media