Ethiopia’s Somali regional state has issued a statement denying claims by the self-declared republic of Somaliland that it had sent troops to support clan militias in restive Las Anod town.
“We are telling the Somaliland administration that there are no DDS [Ethiopia’s Somali regional state] troops who are part of the violence in Las Anod,” state-owned Somali Regional TV (SRTV) posted on Facebook on Thursday.
It denounced the accusations which it termed “reckless”, adding that Somaliland was “seeking to reduce political pressure by pointing fingers at non-existing enemies”.
It also warned Somaliland officials against remarks and actions that could create hostility between communities in the breakaway region of Somalia and those in the south-eastern Ethiopia state.
The statement was issued hours after Somaliland’s cabinet urged the Ethiopian regional state to withdraw troops that it said were supporting clan militias fighting against Somaliland forces on the outskirts of Las Anod since 6 February.