Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Somaliland: Ethiopian and Somaliland Intelligence Depicts officers arrest ONLF Commando-Somaliland Sun




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Wednesday, 26 February 2014 17:21
CID Security Intelligence of SomalilandCID Security Intelligence of Somaliland
By: Moody Boodle
BALLIGUBADLE: (Somalilandsun)- intelligence officers from Somaliland and Ethiopia have arrested two ONLF commando who entered Somaliland through the Ethiopian border and were living in between Balli-Abane and Saila-bari.
Somaliland Security personnel released press statement announcing the arrest of the two terrorists.
They are being held in Balli-gubadle and have not denied that they belong to the ONLF.
The investigators suspect that there are still more of them.
The coalitions of the two countries security have strengthened the perseverance of peace on both borders.
The security officers are doing their best to eradicate the terror organization who oppose the administration in the zone5 provinces of Ethiopia.

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Ethiopian troops reach Galgadud for AMISOM offensive against al-Shabaab - Sabahionline.com

By Osman Mohamud in Mogadishu



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Hundreds of Ethiopian soldiers serving under the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM) reached Guriel district in Galgadud region this week in preparation for operations to remove al-Shabaab from El Dher, Galhareri and El Bur districts.
  • Members of the Ethiopian National Defense Forces stand in formation during a ceremony in Baidoa, Somalia, to mark the inclusion of Ethiopia into the African Union peacekeeping mission on January 22, 2014. [AFP PHOTO / AU UN IST PHOTO / Tobin Jones]
    Members of the Ethiopian National Defense Forces stand in formation during a ceremony in Baidoa, Somalia, to mark the inclusion of Ethiopia into the African Union peacekeeping mission on January 22, 2014. [AFP PHOTO / AU UN IST PHOTO / Tobin Jones]
The Ethiopian troops arrived Tuesday (February 11th), Deputy Chairman of Ahlu Sunna wal Jamaa's (ASWJ) Executive Committee Ahmed Abdullahi Mohamud told Sabahi, and they are co-operating with allied forces in the region.
"The plan to oust al-Shabaab from the areas they currently occupy in Galgudud region started with momentum," he said. "The plan is being carried out by two collaborating fronts, the Ethiopian troops from AMISOM and the ASWJ militia. We hope to liberate people living in the territory held by al-Shabaab in the province as soon as possible."
Mohamud said local residents welcomed the Ethiopian troops in Galgudud taking part in the operation with ASWJ.
"This is huge. [The people] cannot wait. Traditional elders, religious scholars, youth and businesspeople -- they call us all the time. They are oppressed in this world and they need to be freed from this oppression," he said. "The public strongly supports the operation that is currently being planned."
Speaking to reporters on February 6th, Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn explained whyEthiopia joined AMISOM and its fight against al-Shabaab.
"We have joined AMISOM forces because this international terrorism has to come to an end," he said. "We have to co-operate with all other AMISOM forces so that we can weaken al-Shabaab and support the legitimate government there in Somalia."
He said he was hopeful that through co-operation with troops from Uganda, Kenya, Burundi and Sierra Leone they would be able to eliminate the militant group throughout Somalia.

Citizens in al-Shabaab-controlled areas 'barely alive'

Omar Ahmed, a 28-year-old shopkeeper in El Bur, said he welcomed the operation.
"We have been waiting for the plan to free us from al-Shabaab for a long time," he told Sabahi. "We are ready to participate in any way to stop or eliminate al-Shabaab. They have mistreated the people. They have not spared us any harm. We are just barely alive."
Ahmed condemned al-Shabaab's behaviour, saying it cannot be described as something based on Islam.
"Al-Shabaab have made themselves known to everyone in the world through their actions of killing the public. They have no other history," he said. "Our religion does not permit killing a human being without cause, regardless of what religion the person practices."
Khadijo Farah, a 38-year-old mother of six from Galhareri, said she fled to Mogadishu with her children in 2012 when she could no longer tolerate the problems al-Shabaab was inflicting on the public.
"When I saw them forcefully recruiting many children, I fled to Mogadishu with all my children," she told Sabahi. "I am now hearing joyful news about the ongoing plan to remove al-Shabaab from Galhareri district. I have missed my home. However, I would like to hear about the specific day our region will be freed for us."
Farah said her neighbours in Galhareri tell her about the human rights violations al-Shabaab inflicts on them.
"[They] tell me al-Shabaab has forcefully recruited some of their children. They have also married many of their daughters by force," she said. "They are a terrorist group that has disrupted all Somalis. I am asking AMISOM troops to create a plan to fight the terrorists."
Ali Jama, a 51-year-old elder in El Bur, said the Ethiopian and ASWJ troops should exercise extreme caution in their operation against al-Shabaab.
"First, I do not think there is anything worse than the problems this community has experienced through al-Shabaab in the years El Bur was under their control," he told Sabahi. "However, I think abundant caution should be exercised when the areas under al-Shabaab's rule are being attacked so that civilian casualties can be minimised. Heavy weapons do not need to be used against al-Shabaab at the present time because the group is weak."

Monday, February 10, 2014

Somaliland with Ethiopia to develop Barbara Coridor with Ethiopia




Somaliland: Grabbing the Ethiopian Lion by the Tail with Help of Bollore

Somaliland: Grabbing the Ethiopian Lion by the Tail with Help of Bollore
Saturday, 25 January 2014 16:05
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President Silanyo and PM Desalegn of Ethiopia during after meeting in Addis Ababa on 11th Jan 2014President Silanyo and PM Desalegn of Ethiopia during after meeting in Addis Ababa on 11th Jan 2014
By: Geleh Ali Marshall
Somalilandsun - Somaliland is cleverly inducing a third party –Bollore Africa Logistics to facilitate and bring into fruition the elusive
Berbera Corridor that holds so much economic promise for this young nation irrespective to its inability to partake in or to become a party to an international agreement. Bolloré Africa Logistics is well suited to harness and fulfill Somaliland's aspirations due to its political influence coupled with its shear capacity, comparative-advantage and expertise.
Once implemented the Berbera-Corridor will connect Somaliland with the emerging 90 plus million nation of Ethiopia that has been one of the fasts growing economies in the world and better yet that has managed to sustain its growth. President Ahmed Mohammed Mohamoud Silanyo of Somaliland has pertinaciously toiled for Berbera Port and its corridor to Ethiopia to be fully agreed on by the nexus of parties involved, the Somaliland president has visited both capitals Addis Ababa and Paris within this single month retaining to this matter.
There is already a feasibility study of port Berbera's capacity and the road networks connecting Somaliland with Ethiopia underway and it is being carried out by a German company Gauff that was selected by IGAD and funded by the EU. Port Berbera will be instrumental in creating trade relations to the already political relations and cultural relations that both countries enjoy. Already the benefits to Port Berbera is that it has a shorter road distance to Addis Ababa than compared to both port Mombasa of Kenya and Port Sudan of Sudan. The road linking Port Berbera and Addis Ababa is 930 kilometers in length, with 240 kilometers of it within Somaliland and remaining 690 kilometers in Ethiopia.
There is no denying it, the last decade has been the Renaissance of the African lion-Ethiopia, the second most populous country in Africa with a population of over 90 million and GDP of over 100 billion exhibited an extraordinary growth rate for a non-oil producing country. Ethiopia might have been known for been largest exporter of coffee and having the most efficient and profitable airline on the continent, but Ethiopia will soon have the highest skyscraper and will be the biggest power exporter in Africa thanks to its economic transformation, where in the last decade Ethiopia was one of the fastest growing economies in the world.
Somaliland is trying to grab this lion by the tail and hoping that it will have the multiplier effect that beyond just revenues provides jobs, stimulates investment, spurs long term-growth and mitigates the constraints from the lack of recognition that have put bilateral assistance and capital markets beyond its reach. Somaliland is ready and aiming to capitalize on the landlocked nation of over 90 million by leveraging its Berbera Port as the corridor to which Ethiopia will cater its emerging market to the rest of the world.
The impasse to the Berbera port has been Somaliland's inability to partake in and to become a party to an international agreement since it is not officially recognized by the rest of the world, which limited or eliminated the renowned financial institutions and insurance companies willing to ensure if not at premium certainly the cargo's travelling through Somaliland or ships docking on Berbera port.
However Somaliland's strategic maneuver to include a large multinational conglomerate likes that of Bolloré Africa Logistics which has the sway and capacity along with Ethiopia to back and guarantee the presumed liabilities associated doing business in an unsovereign nation situated in a conflict- predisposed zone of world dominated by terrorism and piracy. Certainly Somaliland values Bollore's political connections and technical know-how and presumes that Bolloré Africa Logistics is capable of making this venture a success.
The clear-cut objectives of President Ahmed M.M. Silanyo's administration have been the promotion of political, social and economic interests of Somaliland and thus his grandiose development-plan and Somaliland's economic prosperity lies with the free flow of people, services and goods between the Berbera-Corridor. Berbera corridor has been identified as a project that can transform Somaliland and irrespective of its political quandary Somaliland is encouraged by its proximity to Ethiopia and is geared up to benefit from it. Somaliland wants to be a recipient of the Ethiopian electric surplus that many in the East African countries are about to become beneficiaries to. The World Bank and the African development bank have funded what is called the "Eastern Electricity Highway project" that will soon light up 5 African countries that include Tanzania, Uganda, Rwanda, Kenya, Burundi and that is on top of Djibouti and South Sudan who are already receiving electricity from Ethiopia. Somaliland certainly wants to benefit from the Ethiopian electricity surplus, but first the Berbera –Corridor has to be implemented and it has to become a success.
Somaliland is not waiting for Ethiopia to hold its hand or anyone else to dictate any top-down solutions, Somaliland has subsisted within its frugal means since its inception without any substantial assistance from the international community. Somaliland is led by a president with an economic background who has taken a holistic approach with strategic alternatives for fostering economic growth by making development a national priority. To maximize the impact of the president's economic agenda, the president laid the groundwork and transformed the government sector first and his administration did not rest on Somaliland's internal-strengths and laurels of peace and security but they have rather enhanced the capacity of Somaliland's public sector by honing in on and streamlining government services.
Once the government reforms where concluded with the president transitioned onto economic development and in a quest to realize Somaliland's development aspirations, Somaliland has created an enabling and conducive business environment that started with the creation of a whole new government branch to the ministry of Commerce solely to attract foreign Investment. This new branch has published an Investment -Guide and an internet portal that aims to attract foreign direct investment in Somaliland by enticing would be investors with incentives and tax-abatements. It has also created a "One Stop-Shop" that does away with the counterproductive requirements and bureaucratic controls that hindered investments in the past. Somaliland has instituted a viable economic plan called The National Development Plan (NDP) and has also created Somaliland Development Fund (SDF) that is in line with Somaliland's developmental ambitions. Somaliland's NGO act ensures that aid and humanitarian agencies along with development partners concerning the New Deal to be in lockstep with Somaliland's developmental priorities. The current National Development Plan of 2012 to 2016 is based on five pillars that is guided by urgent issues concerning developments in key areas that are set the on the steady path for the long term vision of Somaliland in 2030. President Ahmed M.M. Silanyo's administration's untiring concerted development effort has taken the concrete actions that will bring such vision to reality by enhancing the simple Pastoral economy of Somaliland.
The expedited improvement of Somaliland's public sector can be credited to caliber of competent ministers that have laid a new foundation for Somaliland's transformation. For the first time in Somaliland's history the national forecasted budget was brought to the parliament on a timely manner and it was the largest in the country's history $152 Million. With its meager scare resources the government has invested in the long term human capital of Somaliland by freeing primary education and ensuring Somaliland future cadre are literate and in 2013 Somaliland undertook a country wide census in order for to government comprehend demographic outline of the nation to better meet social needs of its citizens.
The Ethiopian transformation could be contributed to the vision and insistence of late Meles Zenawi who is considered the father of Ethiopia's economic miracle and driver of its momentous achievements. Meles Zenawi affirmatively chose to adhere to the economic growth model of Asian Tiger and rejected the neo-liberal and deregulation growth model prescribed by the so called Washington consensus that consists of the World Bank, US Treasury and the IMF, In addition to the political pressure he was under at the onset from the world trade organization that insisted Meles liberalize the telecom and banking and the national Airline. Meles prudently placed Ethiopian state owned institutions at center of development, which they are playing a big role in even in their current 5 year economic plan 2011-2015. The Ethiopian government had concrete plans and competent institutions that is why its economy prospered and fared well, Plans like the Growth and transformation plan" and steering institutions like Public Enterprise Supervising Agency (PESA). Ethiopia has used its state owned institutions like the Ethiopian commercial bank to support national priorities and act as an anchor for strategic development.
In Somaliland's case it has placed it self well to benefit enormously from this mutually beneficial port Berebera project. With its limited resources and capability Somaliland has done everything within its sphere to rebuild its physical and human capital infrastructure. Somaliland's current economic phase holistically seeks to incorporate public private partnership (PPP) with the backing of it's the civil sector. Somaliland has impressively financed the maintenance and construction of its roads through levies, windfall tax and with the assistance of willing public who see the Ceerigabo road as a national calling. Somaliland has had great achievements such the free primary education, the doubling of public pay, ushering new political parties, in addition to numerous other government endeavors that included Military Ranks.
It is my hope that if the Berbera-Corridor is agreed upon it will have the multiplier effect that Somaliland is in dire need of, and if given the opportunity Somaliland will certainly grab this resilient Ethiopian lion by the tail to create jobs, stimulate investment, and spurs long term-growth for Somaliland.
Bienvenue Au Somaliland!
Geleh Ali Marshall
Geleh@hotmail.com
Hargeisa Somaliland

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Somalis balk at plans for Ethiopian troops - Features - Al Jazeera English

Thousands of Ethiopians will be deployed as part of an African Union peacekeeping mission, worrying many in Somalia.

 Last updated: 03 Feb 2014 12:42
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African Union peacekeeping troops have been present in Somalia since 2007 [EPA]
Nairobi, Kenya - Many Somalis are alarmed at a recent decision to include Ethiopian troops in the African Union Mission in Somalia (AMISOM), a peacekeeping force in the war-ravaged country.

Somali analysts opposing the decision have called it "a mistake", a "political and military miscalculation" that has the potential to "change the body politic of Somalia". After decades of bad feelings between Mogadishu and Addis Ababa, many Somalis see their western neighbour as a Christian arch-foe that should have no role in the affairs of a Muslim country.

Ali Mohamud Rage - a spokesman for al-Shabab, an armed anti-state group in Somalia - urged his countrymen to rise up against the Ethiopians to defend their country or "suffer regret when it's too late".

"The AMISOM shirt legitimates the spilling of the blood of the Somali people and the occupation of the Muslim land of Somalia and the elimination of their religion... We say: 'Wake up from your slumber.'" 

The addition of 4,395 Ethiopian troops will bring the total number of African peacekeeping forces in Somalia to 22,126. Most of the soldiers currently there come from Uganda, Burundi, Kenya, Sierra Leone and Djibouti.

Somali President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud welcomed the African Union decision to have Ethiopians on board, saying they will add "energy" and boost efforts to defeat al-Shabab, whose stated aim is to topple his government and establish an Islamic state in its place. As a result of 22 years of civil war and chaos, Somalia lacks a strong and reliable army that can take on al-Shabab, making the presence of foreign peacekeepers in the country all the more necessary. 

"One should positively look at the whole picture, especially those of us who are concerned about regional peace and security," said Ibrahim Farah, a lecturer at the University of Nairobi.

But many others fear that history may repeat itself, and that the presence of Ethiopian forces may add to already existing anti-Ethiopian sentiments in Somalia, and energise anti-government groups. David Shinn, a former US ambassador to Ethiopia, told Voice of America that he thought the decision was "a mistake" and that Ethiopia's involvement could be a "rallying cry" for al-Shabab.

Ethiopia's invasion

After Ethiopia's military invasion of Somalia in 2006, local and international human rights groups accused Ethiopian troops of killing civilians and committing atrocities, with Amnesty International citing throat-slitting, the gang-raping of women, and reports of Somalis being "slaughter[ed] like goats", in the words of witnesses. The Ethiopian government has denied these allegations.

EU continues training Somali troops
Although the governments of Ethiopia and Somalia currently claim to have a good working relationship, the two countries also went to war in 1977 over the Ogaden region, which is located in eastern Ethiopia but claimed by Somalia. Many Somalis still harbour a grudge against Addis Ababa, which they believe is occupying Somali territory.

Ugandan and Burundian peacekeepers were sent to Somalia in 2007 to replace the Ethiopian forces, who had invaded the country to oust Islamists who had seized control of much of central and southern Somalia. The Ethiopian invasion has become a battle cry for Somali nationalists and Islamists who eventually forced Ethiopia to withdraw its troops from Somalia in 2009.

An AMISOM spokesman, Colonel Ali Houmed, told Al Jazeera that Ethiopian forces deployed to Somalia will have to "comply with" the peacekeeping force's standard operating procedures. He said the aim of adding Ethiopians to AMISOM was to bolster the push to get rid of al-Shabab fighters. 

Since the implosion of Somalia's central government in 1991, Ethiopia has taken a keen interest in the affairs of its eastern neighbour, keeping closer tabs on its security and political developments in a bid to prevent a takeover by anti-Ethiopian Islamist forces.

Somali opposition

"To include Ethiopian forces in AMISOM is a dangerous decision that will not in any way help the stability of Somalia and the region in the long term," said Zakariye Haji Mohamud, a Somali member of parliament and a former chairman of the Alliance for the Re-Liberation of Somalia, a group formed in 2007 to remove Ethiopian troops from Somalia. 

Mohamud said Ethiopian forces are not the "ideal force" to stabilise Somalia, "because there is historical hostility between Somalia and Ethiopia, and that Addis Ababa was never interested in bringing about peace in Somalia... In 2006, they invaded a relatively peaceful country, and when they pulled out they left behind chaos in every corner of southern and central regions."

There is no need to have foreign forces in Somalia, be it AMISOM or others from Africa. Somalia has to administer itself and rebuild its army.
- Abdiqasim Salad Hassan, former Somali president
Faisal Roble, a Horn of Africa analyst and director of research at the US-based Institute for Horn of Africa Studies and Affairs, said the inclusion of Ethiopian troops "could politically destabilise Somalia, galvanise Islamists and may even revive genuine pan-Somali opposition to the presence of Ethiopian and Kenyan forces in the country".

Some Somalis suspect that their country is taking the shape of what its rivals, especially Kenya and Ethiopia, want it to be: a militarily weak nation that is split up into clan-based mini-states, which are unable to mount any effective resistance.

Somalia is already fragmented: Somaliland, in the country's northwest, broke away from Mogadishu in 1991, and northeastern Puntland claims autonomy. Meanwhile, the Kismayo-based Juba Administration, made up of three southern regions, presents itself as the second viable regional administration after Puntland.

Efforts are also under way to form a third state for southwestern regions of Somalia, with little input from the national government in Mogadishu. 

Realpolitik?

"Kenya and Ethiopia would rather have a weak Somalia as a neighbour. This is realpolitik," said Abdiwahab Sheikh Abdisamad, a Horn of Africa specialist who teaches history and political science at Kenyatta University in Nairobi, Kenya. "The reason is that Somalia has not officially renounced its dream of a greater Somalia," which would include Somali-inhabited regions in northeastern Kenya and the Ogaden region in eastern Ethiopia.

Ethiopia's move to join AMISOM follows the example of Kenya, which invaded Somalia in 2011, and the following year joined the peacekeeping mission in the country.

Abdisamad said it is hard to find a country in sub-Saharan Africa that has successfully helped its neighbour recover from armed conflict, while history is replete with examples of countries taking advantage of their neighbours' weaknesses - most notably in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Although Somalia's army and parliament did not mount much resistance to Ethiopian and Kenyan troops joining the AU force, that hasn't stopped other Somalis from protesting. "There is no need to have foreign forces in Somalia, be it AMISOM or others from Africa. Somalia has to administer itself and rebuild its army," said Somalia's former president, Abdiqasim Salad Hassan, in an interview with a local radio station. 

Hassan, a staunch critic of Ethiopian interference in Somali affairs, called on the central government to ask AMISOM donors to help rebuild Somalia's army instead.

About Me

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Prof. Muse Tegegne has lectured sociology Change &  Liberation  in Europe, Africa and Americas. He has obtained  Doctorat es Science from the University of Geneva.   A PhD in Developmental Studies & ND in Natural Therapies.  He wrote on the  problematic of  the Horn of  Africa extensively. He Speaks Amharic, Tigergna, Hebrew, English, French. He has a good comprehension of Arabic, Spanish and Italian.