Landmark Peace Agreement on Buhoodle Conflict
Presidential initiatives combined with grassroots peace-building have yielded success in bringing the first steps to lasting peace to the Buhoodle region, with the prospect now of increased support for economic development.
Below is a press statement issued by the Somaliland Ministry of Foreign Affairs:
The Government of the Republic of Somaliland and prominent community leaders from the Sool region of Somaliland have today, 12 August 2012, undertaken a landmark peace agreement aimed at ending conflict in the Buhoodle district of the Sool region, and resolving domestic grievances through peaceful means. Under this agreement, Somaliland's Government released today 68 prisoners from the Sool region, captured as fighters over the last two years. The government has also pulled back its military forces from Buhoodle. This is part of a peace deal offered by the President of Somaliland as a way forward in resolving issues within the Sool region.
In return, the community leaders and key political figures agreed to implement the peace deal and promote stability. Both sides have also rejected the motives of anti-peace elements in the area whose leaders cynically exploit the concerns of the local people to serve their own political ends.
Somaliland's government recognizes that a continued conflict in the area will only lead to increased instability throughout the region with a spillover into the neighboring countries. This instability may also create safe havens for terrorists and extremists. Somaliland has a long history of resolving such disputes by peaceful means, using mediation by traditional elders and political leaders. Based on this experience, the government will remain committed to engaging with the community and their leaders in implementing this accord.
People from the Sool region already hold high positions in the Government and legislature, and all of our citizens have the same opportunity to engage with, and be represented in, the Somaliland government. Somaliland's electoral laws contain safeguards to ensure that each political party represents, and is sanctioned by, a sizeable constituency from every region of Somaliland.
However, the government recognizes that insecurity in the area has, comparatively speaking, led to underdevelopment. We are firmly committed to addressing this imbalance. As a response, Somaliland's National Development Plan for 2012-2016 highlights specific development projects to be implemented in that area.
We call on the international community to support our efforts in promoting peace, stability and prosperity for all our people in Somaliland and to denounce spoilers who aim to harm our achievement from outside.
Dr. Mohamed A. Omar
Minister of Foreign Affairs
The Government of the Republic of Somaliland
Note: To download the statement, please click here. (PDF Format, 744kb)