The Istanbul meeting: Somaliland must not waver.


Flags of SL Turk Som

By: Yasin Abdilahi Ahmed

Somalilandsun – As Somaliland and Somalia are due to meet in Istanbul now a day’s- Somaliland delegation ought to stick to their positions regardless of what consequences in view of the fact that time is not with us, at least for now, Turkey is not and will not be a neutral arbiter.

Senior Turkish government officials repeated and time after time their support and sympathy for the failed union and their commitment for the territorial integrity of the so called Somalia.

The choice of Istanbul a transcontinental city in which its commercial and historical center lies in Europe while third of its population lives in Asia for the venue of the rendezvous itself speaks in volumes; the largest city in turkey with more population of the defunct Somali state. In other words -as it was the capital city of the Othman Empire, Turkish diplomats might pressure our delegation to accept a kind of concession and will promise with reward as such; the history of Istanbul as the capital city of the Islamic world (during Othman Empire) for 4 centuries will make sense.

The two previous meeting held in United Kingdom and United Arab Emirates respectively were neither successful nor productive. The political shenanigans should not continue forever and realpolitik must start at this time.

Somalia delegation is coming with the meeting a detailed plan so they will try to either push and outmaneuver their counterparties (Somaliland) or at least contain our endeavor of overtures of friendship to Turkey

Our delegation must rise to the occasion and defend the Somaliland’s inalienable right of self determination without trepidation and at all costs. No need to talk about Somalia on trade, security cooperation and other inconsequential issues while they still desist to recognize or acknowledge our rights. At this juncture let’s insist that negotiations must be the real and critical issues which divide the two nations.

It must be clear to all delegation members- defending Somaliland case every wh ere and occasion is not an option or choice. It is a duty and obligation. In actual fact our constitution demands that in word and deed.

As our former president Dahir Rayale kahin made it clear and lucid in a powerful and well structured article appeared at the Washington Times in June 2007 and I Quote, “If the South — still known as Somalia — underwent a miracle and became as stable as Botswana, as prosperous as Singapore and as democratic as South Africa, we would not go back into union. The two countries might work closely together, like the United States and Canada, but our independence will never be on the table”.

Somaliland’s eminent scholars as well as experienced policy thinkers are conspicuously missing from the meeting. A key personalities absent from this conference are the likes of Qaybe, Gees, Jirdeh, Abdillahi Duale, Bashir Goth, Dr Hussein M. Adam and Dr Bulhan these and many others could have been able to push too hard to the corner to our opponents and they could have take a jab at the West’s hypocrisy by putting us pressure to negotiate the irredentists.

As George Oppen, American Poet once said; “clarity, clarity, surely clarity is the most beautiful thing in the world” let the delegation make clear to all, that the Somaliland independence is non- negotiable.

Yassin Abdillahi Ahmed

Hargeisa, Somaliland