Fighting between forces from Somalia’s Galmudug and Puntland states broke out in the central town of Galkayo earlier this week despite a ceasefire, according to the UN Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) on Saturday.
The OCHA said that while a peace agreement was reached on Nov. 1, renewed fighting erupted on Nov. 2 and that the situation in Galkayo remained tense with armed forces maintaining their positions.
“More than 80,000 people were displaced from Galkayo town in Mudug region after armed violence broke out on Oct. 7. Intermittent fighting left 23 people dead and 65 injured,” the OCHA said in a report.
It is unclear how many people died in the renewed fighting since Nov. 2.
Galkayo is currently divided into two districts, with Galmudug governing the southern district and Puntland state the northern one.
Leaders of Galmudug and Puntland earlier this week announced a ceasefire brokered by the United Arab Emirates. The two parties are scheduled to hold further talks to implement the peace agreement on Nov. 20.
Some 40,000 internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Galkayo have faced secondary displacement. Most of them have moved to villages and settlements on the outskirts of the town.
“The conflict has worsened the situation of IDPs, especially those facing secondary displacement. Humanitarian partners are concerned that the impact of the conflict is straining already depleted humanitarian supplies meant for response to those affected by flooding and drought in the region as the Deyr rainy season (October-December) begins,” the OCHA said.
Commercial activity has been disrupted and more than 20,000 students have been affected as schools remain closed, the OCHA said, adding that some humanitarian organizations have been forced to limit staff movement.
Livestock owners and traders who rely on Galkayo as a transit route to the port of Bossaso have also been affected.