UK calls Somaliland and SSC for a ceasefire and dialogue

Published: August 27, 2023

Nairobi: The United Kingdom has called on the President of Somaliland, Muse Bihi Abdi, to declare a ceasefire and enter into talks with the SSC-Khatumo Administration.

In a statement on Twitter, UK Ambassador to Somalia Mike Nithavrianakis said he spoke directly with President Bihi and conveyed Britain’s deep concern over the deteriorating situation in the disputed Sool region, particularly around the town of Las Anod.

“The UK urges all parties to exercise restraint, comply with international humanitarian law, and ensure humanitarian aid access to those in need. Ceasefire and dialogue are critical,” the ambassador remarked.

The UK’s appeal comes a day after President Bihi admitted defeat in the battle for control of Gooja’adde, a key Somaliland base captured by SSC-Khatumo forces last Friday.

For months, Somaliland has rebuffed calls from the international community and UN Security Council demanding its troops withdraw from Las Anod, which they have been shelling since early February.

The escalating conflict has raised fears of wider destabilization in the Horn of Africa region. The UK is urging both sides to cease hostilities immediately and engage in peaceful dialogue to resolve the dispute over Sool’s political status.

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