From: Berhane Habtemariam (Berhane.Habtemariam@gmx.de)
Date: Mon Feb 02 2009 - 14:45:50 EST
Press Release: Developments in Somalia
By Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Feb 2, 2009, 13:40
In the past few days, seemingly new developments regarding the situation in
Somalia have attracted international limelight.
The current perceptions and sentiments notwithstanding, the events require
an objective evaluation so as to present a sound understanding of the issue,
and to direct the efforts of those who seek a genuine solution to the crisis
and wish for a stable Somalia in the right direction.
The positive development is the fact that the struggle of the Somali people
against aggression has increasingly gained momentum to the extent that the
invaders have been vanquished and forced to "pull out". The sheer
significance of this development obviates the need for concretely verifying
the "pull out" or the "withdrawal."
As opposed to the declaration of the withdrawal, the opportunities that have
been lost over a two-year period as a result of the invasion, the
destruction and massacre wrought on the Somali people and holding those
responsible to account, carries greater currency. In due time, the causes
and consequences of the invasion will beg a justification.
The issue at hand is the "new government" established in Djibouti.
Ever since Somalia was designated as a "failed state", this "government"
will be the third that has been formed outside the county. Apart from the
fact that the "government" has been set up outside Somalia, its
"legitimization" with the blessing of the UN and the AU attracts attention.
The choice of an external venue instead of an internal one for establishing
the government does not require much clarification or analysis. Moreover,
there is the question as to who is represented in Somalia and how in its
capacity as "transitional government". And who can bring or send
representatives? These are not issues that can be neglected.
Another controversial issue is the legal basis or authority with which the
UN or the AU can form a government. Not only the Somali people, but any
other people for that matter, would not and cannot accept a government
established abroad and imposed by the UN. In practical terms, two previous
attempts have failed and this third trial raises questions as to where all
this is heading?
Is the "transitional" government truly representative of Somalia? Does it
pertain to Mogadishu or Baidoa? If it is Somalia's, then where do
"Somaliland" "Puntland" or the other "lands" fit in? If it is exclusively
Mogadishu's or Baidoa's, then how is it Somalia's? How does the Somali
political drama and "transitional government" executed by proxy of the UN or
AU represent Somalia and its flag, whose sovereignty and unity these
organizations claim to recognize? Has the AU or the UN officially recognized
"Somaliland", "Puntland" or the other "lands"? If not, all the blessings on
the basis of which legality or logic? These timely and practical questions
deserve answer, rather than philosophy or analysis.
Why then all these nonsensical dramas? And does this in practice ensure
Somalia's sovereignty and national unity, as well as bring about normalcy
through relieving the Somali people from the crisis they have been facing
over the past 17 years? Still more, would it contribute to the stability of
the Horn region that has been adversely affected by the Somali crisis? Or it
is simply the continuation of the endless crisis and suffering of the Somali
people with all its dire consequences?
The first question for all Somalis and concerned parties is not whether the
drama was appealing or which party has benefited and which has lost. A
lasting solution to the problem and a return to normalcy and stabilization
of the region can be ensured only after the Somalis engage in a free and
participatory election of their own that would lead to a re-constitution of
Somalia, without any invasion or external interference and intervention or
"advice". That being said, any self-proclaimed interested party should only
help in bringing about this condition, rather than attempting to substitute
the Somali people.
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
2 February 2009
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