By: Latifa Yusuf Masai
HARGEISA (Somalilandsun) – The governments of Somaliland and the United Arab Emirates are yet to conclude discussions related to the acceptance of the local passport as a valid travel document to the Gulf country.
According to a press statement released by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs & International Cooperation, Republic of Somaliland media reports purporting to the Emirati authorities having accepted the Somaliland passport as valid travel document to that country are false and without foundation.
In the statement signed by the Director of Communications Suleiman Dahir the ministry of foreign affairs which denied the rumoured deal also went on to reveal that negotiations are in the table but not yet conclude and the appointment of a resident Somaliland diplomat in Abu Dhabi is expected to speed up process.
In its statement the ministry of foreign affairs and international cooperation informed
Quote- While categorically denying agreement between the two governments on the local passport being valid for travel to the UAE and while negotiations are on-going on strengthening bi-lateral relations between Hargeisa and Abu Dhabi It is important to note that the country’s resident diplomat in the Gulf Country Ambassador Bashe Awil Omar has assumed duties thence an anticipated outcome on various issues
“The Republic of Somaliland and that of the United Arab Emirates have maintained fruitful relations over the years and Somalilanders remain grateful of the that friendly government’s bountiful support in diverse sectors” Unquote
In the recent past a number of local media houses have been rife with the rumoured acceptance of the country’s passport by the UAE, purportedly a success emanating from intervention by flydubai an UAE owned carrier that ply’s the Hargeisa Dubai route with three weekly flights.
Due to the non-recognition status of Somaliland as a sovereign state internationally, few countries accept its passport as a valid travel document among them Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, South Africa and South Sudan
Meanwhile Somalilandsun can confidently confirm that the UAE is issuing visas to Somaliland diplomatic passport holders’ thence the misconception that the Government in Abu Dhabi has accepted the local passport for entry into the Gulf state.
The Somaliland deputy envoy to Ethiopia Ayanle Salaad Diriye is a recipient of a diplomatic visa to the UAE a country he s set to visit on official duties soon reports investigative journalist and Funca member Mahmud Ali Walaleye.
Accordingly and in relation to the revelation by the foreign ministry that negotiations are on-going in Abu Dhabi the issuance of the diplomatic visa to envoy Ayanle Salaad and the flydubai purported intervention is seen as a prologue to fully fledged use of the Somaliland passport for entry into the Emirates.
It is also no coincidence that the diplomatic visa issuance and rumours denied by the state as pertains the UAE having authenticated the local passport comes in the heels of the appointment of Amb Bashe Awil as resident Somaliland in itself preceded by a very fruitful visit to the Emirates by a state delegation led by President Ahmed Mahmud Silanyo.
Read the Somalia language statement from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs & International Cooperation, Republic of Somaliland
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