Thursday, September 14, 2006

Rayale Fails To Raise The Issue Of Igad Troop Deployment To Somaliland With Meles

Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, September 9, 2006 (SL Times) – Somaliland president Dahir Rayale Kahin failed during a meeting with Ethiopian Prime Minister Meles Zinawi at Addis Ababa on Thursday to seek clarification on a recent statement attributed to Kenyan Foreign minister Raphael Tuju who implied that the deployment of the Igad peacekeeping force to Somalia will include Somaliland.

The minister said “The Igad force is supposed to protect the TFG, help train civilian protection force and establish a united civilian protection force for the whole of Somalia including the breakaway Somaliland and Puntland.”

Reassuring Somalis that the Igad mission will not try to do anything that might be considered offensive to them, Mr. Tuju who is also the Igad council of minister chairman said “We want to train Somalis to manage their own affairs.”

It was the first time that Igad has ever indicated that the military intervention force it wants to send to Somalia will also cover Somaliland.

Strangely enough Somaliland president Rayale who held lengthy discussions with Prime Minister Zinawi had not raised up the issue with his host.

Somaliland opposes the deployment of foreign troops in Somalia let alone Somaliland.
The statements attributed to the Kenyan Foreign minister by the Kenyan press were published by our sister newspaper Haatuf on Thursday. There has been no reaction from the Somaliland government until now to the revelation by Igad that Somaliland will not be excluded from the deployment of peacekeeping troops.

In a statement to the press after the meeting, president Rayale said Ethiopia as a neighboring country, has a duty to play its due role for the prevalence of peace and stability in Somalia.

Source: Somaliland Times

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