For new Somalia government, Al-Shabab a threat to authority
Somaliland claims unilateral independence from Somalia in May 1991 and has been seeking international recognization for 30 years.
LONDON - Somaliland, a breakaway region in northern Somalia has failed a much-funded and well-organized mission to gain recognition as an independent state from the United Kingdon.
On Tuesday, 23 out of 24 lawmakers who attended a brief debate by the House of Commons on Somaliland's recognition, lobbied by Conservative MP Gavin Williamson, called on the British government to take the lead in recognizing Somaliland and take the first step.
The lawmakers argued that Somaliland is a British protectorate and set up its own governance system, a flag, parliament, currency, and passport after the split from Somalia in May 1991.
They said Somaliland was a symbol of democracy in the Horn of Africa by holding free and fair elections without international recognition. One lawmaker suggested that the region still had to meet conditions, including religious freedom.
The UK's Minister for Africa, Vicky Ford has rejected the MPs' move for Somaliland recognition, telling the region to open dialogue with Mogadishu and ask southerners to let it free.
The Adjournment debate in House of Commons underlines consistent UK government position on Somaliland status," she said.
Vicky Ford, who held phone talks with Somalia's minister for foreign affairs Abdisaid Muse Ali before the UK parliament debated the Somaliland status said Hargaies needs to sit down with the Federal Government in Mogadishu to decide their future.
Ford added that the UK will continue to cooperate with Somalia's government and Somaliland on democracy, security, and prosperity to preserve the sovereignty and unity of the country.
Khadar complied with an extraordinary gesture to an armed group that continues to pose a deadly threat to his police colleagues and his government at large.