In yet another attempt to put the world hostage to a non-existent, irrevocable, binding union between the Republic of Somaliland and it, Somalia has made another blunder which only diverts more attention to the long-standing dispute between the two countries.
Following up on other diplomatic pressures some of which it had scores with a world that had not read its history as meticulously as it should, the weak federal ‘government’ in Mogadishu wrote another biting letter to Kenya.
To deliver the so-called protecst, it summoned Ambassador Lucas Tumbo to its ministry of foreign affairs to highlight displeasure on a recent Tweet by Permanent-Secretary Macaria Makau relating to a meeting he had had with the Foreign Minister of the Somaliland Republic, Professor Yassin Haji Mohamoud.
PS Kamau stated that the two sides ‘discussed issues of mutual interest between the two countries and ways of strengthening cooperation’.
@ForeignOfficeKE PS @AmbMKamau this afternoon held talks with Somaliland Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Yasin Hagi Mohamed. The two discussed issues of mutual interest between the two countries and ways of strengthening cooperation. pic.twitter.com/wS5INZGpAI
— ForeignAffairsKenya (@ForeignOfficeKE) June 27, 2019
Somalia espied an affront in the tweet and was quick on the trigger trying to teach PS Macharia how to use the English language.
According to its letter the use of ‘two countries’ in reference to Somaliland and Kenya.
A press statement, carrying the core of Somalia’s professed ‘affront’ ran as follows:
|“On Sunday (June 30th), the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation summoned the Ambassador of the Republic of Kenya to the Federal Republic of Somalia (?), Lt. General (Rtd) Lucas Tumbo, and handed him a protest note against an offensive tweet by the Principal Secretary of the Foreign Affairs of Kenya, Mr Macharia Kamau, on 27 June 2019.
We consider this tweet an affront to Somalia’s sovereignty, unity and territorial integrity as well as harmful to the relationship between Kenya and Somalia.
Somalia stands for good neighborliness, mutual respect and close cooperation with its neighbors, and expects the same from Kenya.
The core message which the note carried was that the Tweet was an affront to sovereignty in which, obviously, Somalia believes the Republic of Somaliland was part of.
The Somaliland Foreign Ministry did not lose a moment but responded in kind – and in much better language, more diplomatic suavity.
“As a sovereign nation,” the FM response pointed out, “Somaliland’s right to engage in peaceful and foreign relations with all other nations is enshrined in international law, and all coercive and threatening measures to deny such cooperation between regional partners not only represent affronts to the principles and protocols on which the international order is based, but does little to promote the peace and security that the region requires”.
It went on to establish how important it was that government attended to their corners of the fence before they tried tearing down other people’s attainments, poking noses into every nook and corner except theirs.
“The Somaliland government thus implores its neighbour Somalia to focus its attention inward, towards meeting the many security, humanitarian and development challenges which the international community has invested so much, rather than involving itself in the affairs of other sovereign nations, including Kenya and Somaliland.
The delusion Villa Somalia harbours stems from an ill-fated, never signed, never approved by parliament union between the erstwhile British Protectorate of Somaliland and Italian Somalia on 1 July 1960. The two parts had nothing with one another until that date and, even then, their ‘marriage’ was not properly officiated.
This latest Somalia attempt follows close on the heels of other impotent protestations one of which tried to stop international partners dealing with Somaliland development as they saw fit.
Relations between the Republic of Kenya and the Republic of Somaliland have visibly strengthened since Somalia took a maritime boundary dispute it had developed with Kenya to the International Court of Justice (ICJ) in 2014.
Kenya has announced last year that it was going to officially open a diplomatic Mission in Hargeisa, the capital of Somaliland appointing Ambassador Philip Githora to head it.
Trade talks between the two countries have since gained fresh ground the latest development from which indicates that Kenya Airways may soon start direct flights connecting Hargeisa to Nairobi.
The international community-propped administration of federal Somalia has been biting its nails trying every trick in the world to keep the 28-year old, very mature, democratic Somaliland tucked away in the shadows forever – an impossible task in the circumstances.