Monday, June 26, 2017

Hargeisa and Mogadishu choose their sides in Qatar crisis

(Africa Intelligence) - Hargeisa and Mogadishu choose their sides in Qatar crisis. While Somaliland has taken Saudi Arabia's side, Somalia has adopted a neutral position in the conflict pitting Qatar against the Gulf Countries. And in doing so each of them struck hard bargains.

On June 7 Somalia's foreign minister, Yusuf Garaad Omar, publicly deplored that Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates had broken off diplomatic ties with Qatar.
Three days later his Somaliland counterpart,Saad Ali Shire, took sides in the crisis by lining up behind Saudi Arabia and the UAE against Qatar. Somaliland's choice took shape on June 6 during talks between Emirati representatives and Bashe Awil Omar,Somaliland's envoy to Dubai and son-in-law of Somaliland president Ahmed Mohamed Mahamoud, aka Silanyo.Taking the opposite tack to Somali president Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed Farmajo, Silanyo hopes to see Saudi Arabia return to his country and have the UAE back his call for international recognition of Somaliland. In adopting that stand, Silanyo also sent a signal to Turkish president Recep Tayip Erdogan, who is close to Doha. Somaliland reproaches Turkey with favoring Somalia in the mediation effort Ankara has undertaken between Hargeisa and Mogadishu.
Indeed, Somaliland hopes a new mediator will be named. According to our sources, Qatar contactedMusa Bihi Abdi, presidential candidate and leader of the ruling party in Hargeisa, Kulmiye, on June 9 and tried invain to get him to adopt a neutral position.

 On the evening of June 13, Silanyo and his circle decided to shortly send a raft ofministers to Abu Dhabi and Riyadh to outline Somaliland's position. As for Somalia, Farmajo has already seen to itthat Qatar and Turkey put up money to reward Hargeisa for remaining neutral in the Gulf country showdown