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International Criminal Court seeks arrest warrants for Netanyahu, Gallant, 3 Hamas leaders

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The head prosecutor at the International Criminal Court announced Monday that he is seeking arrest warrants for Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Yoav Gallant, along with three Hamas leaders in Gaza for war crimes and crimes against humanity in connection with the Israel-Hamas war, a decision that has triggered a slew of reactions.

Israeli President Isaac Herzog called the announcement “beyond outrageous and shows the extent to which the international judicial system is in danger of collapsing.”

Herzog added on his social media platform X post that “any attempt to draw parallels between these atrocious terrorists and a democratically elected government of Israel — working to fulfill its duty to defend and protect its citizens entirely in adherence to the principles of international law — is outrageous and cannot be accepted by anyone.”

Israel’s foreign minister Israel Katz echoed Herzog’s comments calling ICC’s request to issue arrest warrants for Netanyahu and Gallant an “outrageous decision.”

In a post on social media platform X, U.S. Senator Lindsay Graham decried the ICC decision. “The state of Israel is waging one of the just wars fought in modern history following a reprehensible massacre perpetrated by terrorist Hamas on the 7th of October,” he said. “The prosecutor’s position to apply for arrest warrants is in itself a crime of historic proportion to be remembered for generations.”

The Hamas Islamist group, which is designated by the U.S., the U.K and other countries as a terrorist militant organization, also denounced the ICC prosecutor’s decision to seek arrest warrants for three of its leading members. It accused ICC prosecutor Karim Khan of trying to “equate the victim with the executioner.” In a statement Monday, the group said it has the right to resist Israeli occupation, including “armed resistance.”

Balkees Jarrah, associate international justice director at Human Rights Watch, hailed Khan’s decision.

“This principled first step by the prosecutor opens the door to those responsible for the atrocities committed in recent months to answer for their actions at a fair trial,” Jarrah said in a statement Monday.

ICC prosecutor Khan announced Monday that his office believes all five people bear responsibility for acts against humanity.

He said in a statement, Netanyahu and Gallant “bear criminal responsibility” for war crimes and crimes against humanity, including starving civilians as a method of warfare and intentionally directing attacks against civilians “as a means to eliminate Hamas, secure the return of the hostages which Hamas has abducted, and collectively punish the civilian population of Gaza, whom they perceived as a threat to Israel.”

In addition, Khan said, the Hamas leader in Gaza, Yahya Sinwar, commander of the Hamas military wing Mohammed Diab Ibrahim al-Masri, and the head of the Hamas political bureau Ismail Haniyeh are responsible for war crimes and crimes against humanity, including murder, taking hostages as a war crime, rape, other sexual violence and torture.

“It is the view of my office that these individuals planned and instigated the commission of crimes on 7 October 2023, and have through their own actions, including personal visits to hostages shortly after their kidnapping, acknowledged their responsibility for those crimes,” Khan said. “We submit that these crimes could not have been committed without their actions.”

The prosecutor must request the warrants from a pre-trial panel of three judges, who will first examine the evidence before they decide if they move forward with arrest warrants.

Palestinians look at the rubble of a family house that was hit overnight in Israeli bombardment in the Tal al-Sultan neighborhood of Rafah in southern Gaza, May 20, 2024.
Palestinians look at the rubble of a family house that was hit overnight in Israeli bombardment in the Tal al-Sultan neighborhood of Rafah in southern Gaza, May 20, 2024.

Israel is not a member of the ICC, and even if the arrest warrants are issued, Netanyahu and Gallant do not face any immediate risk of prosecution. But Khan’s announcement increases Israel’s isolation as it presses ahead with its war, and the threat of arrest could make it difficult for the Israeli leaders to travel abroad.

Israel’s war in Gaza was triggered by the October Hamas terror attack on Israel that killed 1,200 people and led to the capture of about 250 hostages, according to Israeli officials.

Israel’s subsequent counteroffensive in Gaza has killed more than 35,400 Palestinians, according to the Hamas-run Gaza Health Ministry, which includes civilians and combatants in its count, but says most of the dead are women and children.

Israel says it has killed more than 14,000 militants and around 16,000 civilians.

US talks

Meanwhile, Gallant said Monday that Israel is committed to broadening its ground operations in the southern Gaza city of Rafah, as he met with White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan.

Gallant said in a statement that he told Sullivan the effort in Rafah was aimed at dismantling the Hamas militant group and securing the return of the hostages still being held in Gaza.

Gallant also said he and Sullivan discussed ways to strengthen Israel’s position in the Middle East.

Sullivan met Sunday with Netanyahu to discuss a more targeted Israeli military operation against Hamas in Gaza that would lower risks of civilian collateral damage.

The U.S. official reiterated President Joe Biden’s “longstanding position on Rafah,” the White House said, referring to calls by Biden to avoid a major offensive in Rafah due to fears of a humanitarian disaster.

Netanyahu has vowed not to let up the fight against Hamas until the Islamist group is defeated and all remaining hostages are brought home.

However, his Cabinet is facing an internal rift on a postwar Gaza governance plan.

Benny Gantz, one of the ministers of his War Cabinet, threatened to quit the governing coalition Saturday, unless Netanyahu approves a postwar “action plan” by June 8.

Some information for this report was provided by Reuters, The Associated Press and Agence France-Presse.

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Washington Watches as Tehran Negotiates with Niamey for 300 Tonnes of Uranium

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As Iran negotiates a significant uranium deal with Niger’s junta, the U.S. and French interests face new challenges, spotlighting the geopolitical implications in West Africa.

The United States is closely monitoring the ongoing negotiations between Iran and Niger’s military junta for the delivery of 300 tonnes of uranium. This development has significant geopolitical implications, particularly for France’s nuclear fuel firm Orano, which operates in the region, and raises concerns within the Biden administration​​.

Niger, a country with substantial uranium reserves, has become a critical focus of international attention due to its pivotal role in the global uranium market. The West African nation has been under military rule since the 2021 coup that ousted President Mohamed Bazoum. The political instability in Niger has led to shifting alliances and new economic agreements, such as the one currently under negotiation with Iran.

The potential deal between Iran and Niger represents a significant shift in the region’s political landscape. For Iran, securing a stable supply of uranium is crucial for its nuclear program, which continues to be a contentious issue on the international stage. The Biden administration’s vigilance reflects broader concerns about Iran’s expanding influence in Africa and the implications for global nuclear non-proliferation efforts.

France, through its company Orano, has long been a dominant player in Niger’s uranium sector. The negotiations between Tehran and Niamey put Orano in a delicate position, potentially undermining French economic interests and highlighting the diminishing Western influence in Niger post-coup.

The deal underscores the complex security environment in West Africa. Iran’s involvement in Niger can be seen as part of a broader strategy to extend its geopolitical reach. This move is likely to provoke reactions not only from the U.S. but also from regional players who are wary of increased Iranian presence in their backyard.

In conclusions, the uranium negotiations between Iran and Niger’s junta are a critical issue that could reshape regional alliances and economic partnerships. The U.S. and France are particularly concerned about the potential repercussions on their strategic interests in West Africa. As this situation unfolds, it will be essential to monitor the responses from major global and regional powers and the impact on the already volatile security landscape in West Africa.

By keeping a close watch on these developments, Washington aims to navigate the intricate geopolitical chessboard that is increasingly influenced by Iran’s strategic maneuvers in Africa.

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The Looming Threat of Traditional Power in Somaliland

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Traditional Power Challenging Modern Governance

The political landscape of Somaliland is being reshaped by the unchecked influence of traditional clan leaders and their alignment with political factions, presenting a dire threat to the region’s stability. The recent arrest of Osman Omar Dool, a vocal critic of the Somaliland National Army and an influential member of the Waddani party, has ignited fierce protests and bold demands from Sultan Daoud Sultan Mohamed Sultan Abdikadir. The Sultan’s ultimatum for Dool’s release within 24 hours, coupled with threats of unspecified consequences, has thrown Somaliland’s capital, Hargeisa, into turmoil.

The Grand Sultan of the Isaaq clan, Sultan Daoud, wielding significant influence inherited from his father, has taken a provocative stance against the government. His involvement in political affairs signals a troubling trend where traditional leaders, often lacking formal education and modern political acumen, are leveraging their inherited power to challenge state authority. Sultan Daoud’s public demand for Dool’s release underscores this growing clash between clannism and governance.

Dozens of Waddani party youths, mobilized by the Sultan’s call, protested vehemently against Dool’s arrest. Dool, known for his relentless criticism of the Somaliland Army and his incendiary social media posts, including personal attacks on the President’s family, was detained upon his arrival in Somaliland. The government’s hesitation to firmly address the defiance of traditional leaders like Sultan Daoud raises alarming questions about its capacity to maintain order and uphold the rule of law.

Historically, Somaliland’s second president, Mohamed Ibrahim Egal, took a hardline stance against the interference of traditional leaders in politics. Egal’s policies aimed to confine Sultans to their traditional roles within their tribes, recognizing the chaos that uneducated and politically naive leaders could unleash. His approach ensured that clan leaders did not overstep their boundaries, preserving the integrity of the political system.

In stark contrast, the current administration appears paralyzed in the face of tribal defiance. Sultan Daoud’s audacious demands and threats go unchecked, emboldening other traditional leaders and setting a dangerous precedent. This lack of decisive action risks enabling a resurgence of clannism that could erode the foundations of Somaliland’s governance.

The involvement of traditional leaders in political affairs is inherently destabilizing. These leaders, who inherit their positions without meritocratic qualifications, often pursue narrow tribal interests at the expense of national unity. Sultan Daoud’s backing of the Waddani party exemplifies this peril, as his support is driven by tribal loyalty rather than political ideology or national interest.

The threat extends beyond Sultan Daoud. The broader issue of clannism and the unchecked power of Sultans who manipulate tribal sentiments for political gain poses a severe risk to Somaliland’s stability. The government’s reluctance to confront these leaders head-on could result in a situation where tribal politics overrides state authority, plunging the region into chaos.

To prevent a descent into tribal anarchy, Somaliland’s government must take decisive action. First, it should reassert the primacy of state authority by enforcing laws uniformly, regardless of tribal affiliations. Traditional leaders who overstep their bounds must be held accountable, mirroring the approach of former President Egal.

Second, the government should embark on a robust educational campaign to enlighten the populace about the dangers of clannism and the importance of national unity. Empowering citizens with knowledge can weaken the grip of traditional leaders who exploit tribal loyalties.

Lastly, engaging in dialogue with moderate traditional leaders to find a balance between respecting cultural heritage and maintaining political stability is crucial. This approach can help integrate traditional structures into the modern state framework without compromising governance.

In conclusion, Somaliland stands at a critical juncture. The rising influence of traditional clan leaders threatens to undermine the government’s authority and destabilize the region. Sultan Daoud’s provocative actions and the government’s inadequate response highlight the urgent need for a strategic shift. By reaffirming the rule of law and addressing the roots of clannism, Somaliland can navigate this turbulent period and emerge stronger, ensuring that tribal politics do not eclipse the nation’s progress.

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Ethiopia Unveils Massive Gas Reserves: A Game-Changer for Energy and Economic Growth

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Ethiopia has announced a groundbreaking discovery of over 21.3 billion cubic meters of natural gas reserves in its Somali region. This significant find, confirmed after drilling 19 wells, marks a pivotal moment for the country’s energy sector and economic prospects.

The discovery of these vast gas reserves is set to drastically reduce Ethiopia’s reliance on imported oil and gas. This shift towards domestic energy production will not only meet internal energy needs but also position Ethiopia as a potential energy exporter. By decreasing dependency on foreign energy, Ethiopia can improve its trade balance and increase its economic resilience.

The development of these natural gas reserves is expected to create numerous job opportunities, significantly contributing to the country’s economic growth. Ethiopia’s Ministry of Mines aims to bring the gas into production by next year, highlighting a commitment to rapid development and utilization of this resource. This initiative aligns with broader national goals of economic development and poverty reduction, potentially lifting many Ethiopians out of poverty through direct and indirect employment opportunities.

Linking these gas reserves to the Berbera port and trade corridor could amplify economic benefits. The integration of energy resources with existing and planned transport infrastructure is poised to transform the region into a hub of trade and prosperity. Dr. J. Peter Pham commented on the strategic importance of this development, noting that it could enhance energy security and turn the Berbera corridor into a linchpin for regional growth and trade.

The Berbera port, already a significant trade gateway in the Horn of Africa, stands to gain immensely from this linkage. The strategic utilization of these gas reserves, combined with the transport infrastructure, will bolster Ethiopia’s position as a key player in the regional energy market. This could lead to increased foreign investment, further enhancing economic growth and development.

Ethiopia’s natural gas discovery heralds a new era for the country’s energy sector. The government’s proactive steps to capitalize on this resource demonstrate a forward-thinking approach to national development. The anticipated reduction in energy imports, coupled with the potential for exports, marks a significant shift towards energy independence.

Moreover, the ripple effects on the economy, from job creation to enhanced trade, position Ethiopia for a period of sustained economic growth. The strategic integration of these reserves with regional infrastructure underscores Ethiopia’s ambition to not only meet domestic energy needs but also to become a regional energy hub.

The discovery of over 21.3 billion cubic meters of natural gas in Ethiopia’s Somali region is a transformative event for the country. By reducing reliance on imports, creating jobs, and linking to strategic trade corridors, Ethiopia is poised to enter a new phase of economic and energy development. As the government moves swiftly to develop these reserves, the country can look forward to enhanced energy security, economic growth, and regional influence.

Ethiopia’s natural gas reserves are more than just a significant energy find; they represent a beacon of opportunity and progress for the nation and the broader region. As Ethiopia harnesses this newfound wealth, the impacts are likely to be profound, setting the stage for a future defined by growth and prosperity.

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Kim Jong Un and Putin Forge New Alliance: North Korea Pledges Full Support for Russia in Ukraine Conflict

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In a highly controversial move, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has vowed “full support and solidarity” for Russia’s war in Ukraine during a historic meeting with President Vladimir Putin in Pyongyang. This unprecedented alliance between North Korea and Russia signals a significant shift in the geopolitical landscape, raising alarm bells in the West and potentially altering the course of the ongoing conflict in Ukraine.

President Putin’s visit to North Korea, his first in 24 years, underscores the deepening ties between Moscow and Pyongyang. As the two leaders met, they projected a united front against what they termed the “hegemonic and imperialist policy” of the United States and its allies. This rhetoric highlights their shared disdain for Western influence and their mutual desire to reshape the global order.

Kim’s pledge of support for Russia’s military endeavors in Ukraine comes at a time when both countries are under intense scrutiny and heavy sanctions from the international community. North Korea has been accused of supplying weapons to Russia in exchange for technological expertise, a claim both nations have denied. However, the possibility of such an exchange raises significant concerns about the escalation of the conflict and the potential for increased military cooperation between the two pariah states.

The culmination of Putin’s visit was the signing of a comprehensive strategic partnership treaty, described by Putin as a “breakthrough” that will take bilateral relations to a “new level.” While the details of this agreement remain undisclosed, it reportedly includes a promise of “mutual assistance” in the event of an attack on either country. This defensive pact could signify a more formalized military alliance, potentially drawing North Korea deeper into Russia’s conflict with Ukraine.

The red carpet welcome for Putin in Pyongyang, complete with a grand ceremony in Kim Il Sung Square and streets adorned with Russian flags, was a clear message to the world: North Korea and Russia are forging a new path together, one that could have far-reaching implications for global security.

In Washington, U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken condemned Putin’s visit to North Korea, highlighting it as a sign of Russia’s desperation. Blinken reiterated concerns about North Korea providing munitions and other weapons to Russia, emphasizing the threat this poses to Ukraine and the broader international community. NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg echoed these sentiments, warning of the potential support Russia could provide to North Korea’s missile and nuclear programs.

The alliance between North Korea and Russia also raises questions about the future of U.N. sanctions. Russia’s veto power has already hindered efforts to impose new sanctions on North Korea, and this partnership could further complicate international efforts to monitor and restrict North Korea’s weapons development.

The burgeoning alliance between North Korea and Russia has significant implications for regional stability in East Asia. Tensions on the Korean Peninsula have been escalating, with recent border incidents and increased military activities on both sides. South Korea, backed by the U.S., has expressed growing concern over North Korea’s military capabilities and its potential role in supporting Russia’s war efforts.

Moreover, the partnership between Kim and Putin could embolden other nations facing Western sanctions to seek similar alliances, further destabilizing global security dynamics. As Putin continues his diplomatic tour, with planned stops in countries like Vietnam, the world watches closely to see how these new alliances will reshape the geopolitical landscape.

Kim Jong Un’s pledge of support for Russia’s war in Ukraine marks a significant and controversial development in international relations. This burgeoning alliance not only challenges Western hegemony but also poses a direct threat to global security. As North Korea and Russia strengthen their ties, the international community must grapple with the potential consequences of this new axis of power. The future of the Ukraine conflict, and indeed global stability, may hinge on how the world responds to this provocative and potentially dangerous partnership.

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Russian President Warns of Nuclear Retaliation Amidst Rising Tensions

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Russian President Vladimir Putin warned of potential nuclear weapon use if Russia’s sovereignty is threatened. This statement, given at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum, comes amid heightened global tensions and ongoing conflict in Ukraine.

Russian President Vladimir Putin issued a stark warning on Wednesday, stating that Russia could resort to nuclear weapons if its sovereignty or territorial integrity is threatened. “If somebody’s actions threaten our sovereignty and territorial integrity, we consider it possible to use all means at our disposal,” Putin declared, emphasizing Russia’s security policy.

Speaking to international journalists at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum, Putin underscored the West’s apparent disbelief in Russia’s willingness to use its nuclear arsenal, which he claimed is far more powerful than the bombs dropped on Hiroshima and Nagasaki during World War II.

Putin also issued a cautionary note to the United States and Germany. He suggested that if Western-made long-range weapons are used by Ukraine to target Russia, it could provoke Russia to deploy similar weapons in regions close to the U.S. or its European allies. “If they consider it possible to deliver such weapons to the combat zone to launch strikes on our territory and create problems for us, why don’t we have the right to supply weapons of the same type to some regions of the world where they can be used to launch strikes on sensitive facilities of the countries that do it to Russia?” he stated.

This warning follows Germany’s recent decision, in tandem with the United States, to authorize Ukraine to strike Russian targets using long-range weapons. Putin noted that the arrival of German tanks in Ukraine shocked many Russians, straining the historically amicable relations between the two nations.

When questioned about the upcoming U.S. elections, Putin expressed indifference, stating, “To say — I am speaking quite sincerely — that we believe that after the elections something will change toward Russia in American policy, I would not say so. We don’t think so. We think that nothing really serious will happen.”

On the ground in Ukraine, the conflict continues unabated. Ukrainian military officials reported that Russian forces launched 22 aerial drone attacks overnight, targeting regions such as Mykolaiv, Dnipropetrovsk, Kherson, Poltava, and Sumy. Ukrainian air defenses intercepted all drones, though the falling debris caused damage to homes and an industrial facility, with at least one reported injury.

In retaliation, Russia’s defense ministry claimed to have destroyed several Ukrainian drones over the Belgorod, Kursk, and Voronezh regions.

Meanwhile, U.S. President Joe Biden is set to meet Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy in France and again at the upcoming G7 summit in Italy. Discussions will focus on the current situation in Ukraine and the ways in which the U.S. can continue to support Ukraine. White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan highlighted the need for more air defenses and continued weapon supplies to Ukraine, while ruling out the deployment of U.S. military trainers.

Putin’s recent statements highlight the escalating tensions between Russia and the West, particularly in light of the ongoing conflict in Ukraine and the strategic deployment of long-range weapons. As global leaders prepare for crucial discussions, the potential for nuclear confrontation remains a pressing concern.

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AFRICOM Denies Responsibility for Deaths of Cuban Doctors in Somalia

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U.S. Military Clears Airstrike Allegations by Al-Shabab, Confirms No Civilian Harm

AFRICOM denies involvement in the deaths of Cuban doctors in Somalia, refuting al-Shabab claims. U.S. airstrike near Jilib confirmed, but civilian harm dismissed.

The U.S. military has denied allegations that it was responsible for the deaths of two Cuban doctors in Somalia, which the al-Shabab militant group attributed to a U.S. airstrike in February.

The latest civilian harm assessment from U.S. Africa Command (AFRICOM) confirms that an airstrike was conducted near the town of Jilib on February 15. However, the report categorically denies that this strike resulted in the deaths of the doctors.

“On Feb. 17, 2024, the command received one (1) report of an online media source stating two (2) civilians were killed as a result of a U.S. military operation in the vicinity of Jilib, Somalia, on Feb. 15, 2024,” the assessment noted. “The command completed a review of available information and assessed that the U.S. airstrike conducted on Feb. 15, 2024, did not result in civilian harm.”

Al-Shabab claimed without proof that the airstrike killed Assel Herrera and Landy Rodriguez, who had been held hostage since April 2019 after being abducted from Mandera County in northeastern Kenya. The militant group published an image allegedly showing one of the hostages’ bodies, but VOA Somali has not independently verified the doctors’ deaths.

AFRICOM also assessed two other incidents this year: one on January 25 near Galhareeri in Galmudug state and another on February 22 in Kurtunwaarey in Southwest state. In both cases, U.S. airstrikes were blamed for civilian injuries and fatalities. AFRICOM’s review determined there were no U.S. military operations at the reported times and locations.

AFRICOM emphasized its commitment to transparency and thorough investigation of civilian harm reports. “U.S. Africa Command takes all reports of possible civilian harm seriously and has a process to conduct thorough reviews and assessments using all available information,” the assessment stated. “The command remains committed to reviewing and assessing any reports of civilian harm.”

The United States has long supported the Somali government with airstrikes against al-Shabab and military training for government troops. In February, the U.S. and Somalia signed a Memorandum of Understanding to construct up to five military bases for the U.S.-trained elite Somali National Army forces known as the Danab (lightning) Brigade.

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Kenya’s Port of Mombasa Slips Below Berbera in Global Rankings Again

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Mombasa Port Ranks Below Berbera for Second Year in World Bank Report

East Africa’s Largest Port Falls to 328th Position as Berbera Surges to 106th

Kenya’s Port of Mombasa ranks below Berbera for the second consecutive year in the latest World Bank Container Port Performance Index, highlighting efficiency issues and regional competition.

For the second consecutive year, Kenya’s Port of Mombasa has ranked below the Port of Berbera in the World Bank’s Container Port Performance Index (CPPI). The latest report shows a further decline for Mombasa, dropping to 328th position out of 405 ports globally, down from 326th last year. Meanwhile, the Port of Berbera in Somaliland made a significant leap to 106th place from 144th, showcasing its rising prominence in regional cargo handling efficiency.

Key Highlights from the Report:

Mombasa’s Decline and Regional Comparison:

Mombasa’s consistent decline is evident since the inception of the CPPI in 2020, where it was ranked 296th. Despite this, Mombasa outperformed Dar es Salaam, which fell from 312th to 367th, and Djibouti, which experienced a steep drop from 26th to 379th.

The rankings are based on efficiency, specifically the time elapsed between a ship’s arrival and its departure after completing cargo exchange.

Berbera’s Rise in Efficiency:

The Port of Berbera’s improved ranking can be largely attributed to the operational management by DP World since 2017. This partnership has resulted in a 35% increase in cargo volumes and a 300% rise in vessel productivity.

Berbera’s implementation of new digital systems and sustainable practices has significantly reduced vessel waiting times from days to mere hours, enhancing overall port efficiency.

Improvements Noted by Kenya Ports Authority (KPA):

Despite the drop in rankings, the KPA highlights several improvements at Mombasa. The turnaround time for container vessels decreased from an average of three days in 2022 to two days in 2023.

Additionally, the average container dwell time reduced to 3.5 days from 3.9 days in 2022, marking a 10% improvement.

Ship waiting time for containerized vessels dropped to 0.2 days, and the gross vessel turnaround time decreased from 90.5 hours in 2022 to 64.1 hours in 2023.

World Bank’s Ranking Methodology:

The CPPI uses a combined approach of administrative and statistical methods to ensure the rankings reflect actual port performance and are statistically robust. The methodology includes expert judgment and factor analysis.

Implications for Regional Trade:

Efficient port operations are crucial for regional trade development. The World Bank emphasizes that such efficiencies can significantly enhance trade activities, especially following the downturn induced by the COVID-19 pandemic. The contrasting fortunes of Mombasa and Berbera illustrate the dynamic nature of port competitiveness in East Africa.

Conclusion:

The ongoing improvements in Berbera and the relative decline of Mombasa underscore the importance of continuous investment in port infrastructure and management. As East Africa’s trade landscape evolves, the performance and efficiency of its key ports will play a critical role in shaping economic outcomes for the region.

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A Nation Under Threat: The Battle for Somaliland’s Sovereignty

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An Urgent Call to Protect Somaliland’s Hard-Earned Independence from Internal Betrayal

It is deeply regrettable that the heroes who liberated Somaliland, including President Muse Bihi and Minister of Interior Mohamed Kahin, are now subjects of insult and humiliation by individuals within the country. The spokesman of the Waddani Party, Galal, recently stated that it is inappropriate to recognize Somaliland now, suggesting that recognition should wait until the Waddani Party assumes power. This statement starkly contrasts with the unwavering commitment of President Bihi and Minister Kahin to secure international recognition for Somaliland.

The government’s apparent inaction against those who oppose Somaliland’s recognition raises critical questions. Why has the government not addressed the actions of these individuals decisively? Is there a lack of political will, or perhaps an absence of capable professionals who can handle such delicate matters? It is imperative for the government to identify and empower individuals who can professionally and effectively deal with those undermining Somaliland’s independence.

The stakes are high. If the government does not act swiftly, the negative influence of anti-recognition groups could spread, affecting women and children and potentially leading to a situation where it is too late to reverse the damage. It is crucial for the government to address this issue harshly and urgently, without gloves, to prevent Somaliland from losing its hard-won sovereignty.

The accusations against the Waddani Party leaders are grave. They are alleged to have a hidden agenda aimed at reintegrating Somaliland with Somalia. Mohamed Abdullahi Omar, for instance, has been accused of signing agreements in 2012 that recognized Somaliland as a region under Somalia. Ibrahim Nuh Hussein, former chairman of the Kulmiye party in the UK, highlighted that Omar’s recent activities indicate a continued effort to undermine Somaliland’s independence.

The economic implications of this alleged conspiracy are profound. The Port of Berbera, a vital economic lifeline for Somaliland, is at risk. The reintegration of Somaliland with Somalia could destabilize this critical infrastructure, disrupting trade and economic growth. This potential threat underscores the urgency of addressing the conspiracy against Somaliland.

The controversy surrounding the Waddani Party leaders has elicited diverse reactions. Supporters of Somaliland’s independence view the allegations with grave concern, recognizing the existential threat posed by such internal betrayal.

Looking ahead, the upcoming elections in November 2024 will be pivotal. If the Waddani Party succeeds in its alleged agenda, Somaliland could face significant internal strife and a reconfiguration of its political landscape. On the other hand, a strong rejection of these moves could galvanize further support for Somaliland’s independence movement.

In conclusion, the true supporters of Somaliland’s independence must act swiftly and decisively to safeguard their nation’s sovereignty. The government must prosecute those who oppose Somaliland’s recognition and ensure that no internal conspiracies undermine its autonomy. By taking harsh and urgent measures, Somaliland can protect its sovereignty and continue its quest for international recognition.

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