By: Mo Ali/Medeshi
Somalilandsun – London , – An event for the commemoration of the British Somaliland soldiers who fought in the first and second world wars was held on Sunday , 10, Nov , 2013 at the Commonwealth Remembrance Gates next the Duke of Wellington Arch in Central London.
The event was a tribute to all the Somali heroes who fought for Great Britain during the World wars, whose courage and commitment rose above the extra ordinary challenges they faced.
The commemorative event organised by SAHAN group was initiated by ambassador Ali Awale , head of the Somaliland mission in UK who laid the wreath of remembrance for the fallen heroes.
The memorial is one it’s kind that takes place on the second Sunday of Nov. every year. Today’s event for the commemoration of the forgotten British Somaliland soldiers was the first since 2002.
Among the participants were freelance British journalists , members for the Somaliland Diaspora, Somaliland media and Conrad Heine from the Economist magazine.
A soldier from the British parachute wing who also attended the event encouraged Somalilanders to participate in the yearly remembrance day and urged the landers to reserve a place in advance in the Sunday Remembrance event yearly. He has even suggested that Somaliland army to be represented in the remembrance day by members from the Somaliland forces.
British Somaliland was a British protectorate in present-day Somaliland Republic. For much of its existence, the territory was bordered by Italian Somaliland, French Somaliland and Ethiopia. From 1940 to 1941, it was occupied by the Italians and was part of Italian East Africa.
The protectorate briefly obtained independence on 26 June 1960 as the State of Somaliland before uniting as scheduled with the Trust Territory of Somalia (the former Italian Somaliland) to form the Somali Republic on 1 July 1960. Somaliland seceded from Somalia on may 18 , 1991 after a bloody civil war with socialist government lead by the late dictator , Siyad Barre . More than 70,000 Somalilanders have been killed during the struggle against the dictatorship..
Although it is not recognised internationally as sovereign state , the country has held two presidential elections, two local government elections and one parliamentary election since 1991. Somaliland has its national army , its own flag, passport , currency and diplomatic missions in more than half a dozen countries.