Saturday, October 20, 2007

Violations of Human Rights of the Government of Somaliland and the Detention of Qaran Political Association leaders

(Waridaad) - Ref/SHURO-Net/ 0326 /07 Date: 17/10/07

To: H.E. Dahir Rayale Kahin
President of the Republic of Somaliland

Og: All Human Rights Organizations in/outside Somaliland

Og: All Free Press in/outside Somaliland

Subject: Violations of Human Rights of the Government of Somaliland and the Detention of Qaran Political Association leaders

The umbrella organization Shuro-net is the umbrella of all the human rights organizations in Somaliland, which come from all the regions of the country. The main objective of Shuro-net is the development and protection of all the basic rights and freedoms guaranteed by the Somaliland Constitution and the Instruments of the Universal Human Rights.

Considering this lofty ideal, Shuro-net aims this press release to help stop and prevent the violations of the Somaliland Government against human rights and to avoid any thing that can affect the peacefulness of Somaliland.

Knowing the postponement of the Local Government elections, Shuro-net, carefully following the human rights situation and watching the progress of the democracy taking root in Somaliland, is worried when it examined deeply the increasing violations of human rights of the Somaliland Government. This can have a serious effect on the nations’ request for recognition and wide spread justice in Somaliland.

In that case, when the Security Committees lead any one they want to gaol without bringing one to court of justice which is a violation of the law of the land; when the national judiciary is not independent of the Executive Branch of the Government; when the citizen who talks against the Government is arrested without any crime committed; when the freedom of the press does not really exist in the country, at the same time the Somaliland Government uses one of the most draconian laws in the world to harass its citizens; when the Government refuses people the right to demonstrate peacefully under the pretext of keeping the peace; when the supporters of Qaran Political Association are arrested without any court warrant; when you add to this the illegal detention of Qaran Political Association leaders who are still languishing in Mandera Prison, how can Somaliland claim it is a democratic country that respects human rights.

Detention without trial

Generally, in all the prisons of Somaliland are kept many people who were not brought before a court of justice, but the National and Regional Security Committees applied for their detention the so-called Public Order Law which the previous Parliament abolished with a strong vote in the middle of 1999.

On 12/10/07 at around 7 A.M. the police in Burao arrested and took to the central prison Mr. Muhyadin Mursal Abdi Gabose and Mr. Ali Mohamoud Habi nicknamed “Ali-Babur”. No legal process what so ever was followed for the arrest of these two elders who are members of the Gabose family.

Shuro-net, referring to Article 9 (1) of the International Law of Civil and Political Rights, which says that no one can be unlawfully arrested or detained, no one can be deprived of one’s liberties without due process of law; also referring to Article 9 of the Universal Human Rights and Article 25 (2) of the Somaliland Constitution, strongly condemns these illegal arrests by Somaliland Government authorities.

Like wise, the detention of the two elder, Mursal Abdi Gabose and Ali-Babur caused armed violent youths to storm the Burao Central Police Station to free the detainees. This incident between the police and the youths in which fire arms were exchanged caused the following deaths and injuries to people:

Dama Abdi Jama – dead
Farah Ali Mohamed – dead (police man)
Suldan Mohamed Ajab – injured
Hassan Said Sarwel – injured
Mohamed Hassan Aideed – injured
Bidar Muse Weyd – injured (police man)
Faysal Ali Damal – injured

It is not the first time the Somaliland Government arrested the supporters of Qaran Political Association, but as is clear in the Human Rights Register, the Somaliland Government arrested on the night of 10 October 2007 Mr. Mahdi Jama Omer and Mr. Mohamed Abdi Jibril who did not do any crime while the police were not carrying any warrant of arrest. Shuro-net is against the unlawful arrest of civilians without due process of law. We also don’t support the people to take the law into their own hands, which can endanger the existence of Somaliland.

The detention of the leaders of Qaran Political Association

The leaders of Qaran Political Association were taken to Mandera Prison on 28 July 2007, when the Government accused them of having formed an illegal political party that violates the Constitution. Shuro-net, the human rights umbrella that closely and carefully followed this case, has confirmed the arrest of these leaders was against the justice and human rights guaranteed by the Somaliland Constitution. The President of Somaliland, H. E. Dahir Rayale Kahin has made it conditional for the release of the three leaders Dr. Mohamed Abdi Gabose, Engineer Mohamed Hashi Elmi and Mr. Jamal Aideed Ibrahim, who are detained for their believe, to ask for his pardon. Shuro-net sees this demand for a pardon to be an obstacle being put in front of the political rights of the leaders of Qaran Political Association as well as the execution of the agreement between the President and National Councils that resulted from the mediation of the Voluntary Committee that settled the nagging differences between the National Government Councils. For this reason, Shuro-net is calling the Government of Somaliland to restore to the leaders of Qaran Political Association their freedom earliest possible, and to settle the differences with them through dialogue and understanding.


Shuro-nit is calling the Government of Somaliland to:
Release as soon as possible with out condition all detainees in Somaliland prisons that kept there with out the order of a court of law.
Restore to the leaders of Qaran Political Association their freedom as soon as possible.

Stop the unlawful arrest of citizens and instead to follow the due process of law to detain people.

Must bring before the law all government officers and functionaries of law enforcement agencies in Somaliland who commit violations against human rights and stop them, as happens now, to use the national uniforms as the shields to cover their bad deeds.

Zamzam Abdi Adan Mubarik Ibrahim Aar
Chairperson Shuro-net Director Shuro-net

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