Horndiplomat-The BBC Arabic aired an interview with UAE State Minister of Foreign minister Anwar Gargash said Berbera Port deal had the blessing of the government of Somalia, & that UAE fully respects the unity of Somalia.
The Somaliland leader of Waddani opposition party Mr Abdirahman Mohamed Abdilahi Irro was responding that interview with UAE State Minister of foreign affairs, who told BBC Somali that UAE signed the agreement with former Somalia President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud. Irro accused president Muse bihi of committing “treason”, says agreement needs to be released to the public.
The Somaliland opposition leader also accused President of Somaliland Muse Biihi Abdi of “hiding the truth” about who signed the agreement, says he should resign and call for early elections or be impeached and removed from office. No reaction so far from musebiihi’s office.
Meanwhile, Somaliland’s Foreign Minister Dr Sa’ad A Shire today’s Speaking at Chatham House answered questions from the audience at Chatham House, Shire, especially has commented the agreement between Somaliland and UAE.
“Somaliland and the UAE signed a contract and no other third party was involved. The second contract is between Somaliland, UAE and Ethiopia on Berbera Port. No other party was involved.” Dr Shire Says
Somaliland foreign minister also underlined ties between Somaliland and Gulf states.
“Somaliland has strong economic & political ties with the Gulf states based on mutual interests. 80% of exports go to Saudi Arabia; 20% in Yemen; and 1/3 of imports arrive via the UAE”
Somaliland signed an agreement last year with one of the world’s largest port operators, DP World, to operate its Port of Berbera. The agreement with DP World, which is majority-owned by the Dubai government in the UAE, was signed the same year that the UAE’s plans to build a naval base in Berbera were revealed.
Back in March, Somaliland, DP World and Ethiopia announced signing the tripartite agreement for Berbera port which gave Somaliland 30%, a stake which Somaliland opposition leader Abdirahman Irro has complained about in his press conference on Thursday. pic.twitter.com/vj4vxX2icx
— Harun Maruf (@HarunMaruf) April 19, 2018
It’s the latest example of how DP World’s business dealings in East Africa increasingly mirror the UAE’s military expansion in the region.
The UAE, which is also reportedly building up a long-term military presence in Eritrea, is not the only country with troops in East Africa. Turkey opened a military base in Somalia last year. Neighbouring Djibouti is home to a U.S. base that launches drone missions over Somalia and Yemen, as well as a Chinese military base and Japan’s first overseas base since World War II.
Somaliland declared its independence nearly three decades ago from Somalia, but despite having its own currency, parliament, military and legal system The territory has been experiencing stability and economic prosperity and has been influential in the fight against piracy and terrorism in the Horn of Africa.
By: Mohamed Duale Editor-in-Chief
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