Protests erupt in Sanag region after shooting by Somaliland Security Services (RRU)

El-Afwayn (Caasimada Online) – Residents in El-Afwayn district in the Sanag region of Northern Somalia have staged protests following a shooting incident involving the Somaliland security services on Sunday. 

On Sunday, a civilian named Abokor Omar Ali was killed by Somaliland’s RRU forces near the district. The protesters took to the streets, calling for justice and using the Somali national flag and tire burning as symbols of their discontent.  

Background on Somaliland and Sanag region

Somaliland declared independence from Somalia in 1991, but the international community has not acknowledged its status as an independent state. 

However, the breakaway region has established control over much of northern Somalia, including the Sanag region. Inter-clan conflicts in the El-Afwayn district had subsided over the past two years due to peace agreements among the clans. However, the recent killing has reignited tensions in the region.

Protests in El-Afwayn

According to witnesses, police used live ammunition to disperse protesters who were calling for justice in response to the killing of Abokor Omar Ali. Representatives from the Sool region in the Somaliland House of Representatives have requested the government to address the recurrent killings by the army. 

MP Iid Hidig stated, “We are tired of the government saying that they are conducting investigations, but no results have been produced. We are standing this morning and demanding justice from the government.”

Tensions in SSC Region

This latest disturbance in the El-Afwayn district follows protests in Las Anod in December, where unknown shooters killed several intellectuals and politicians. The Somaliland authorities have been accused of killing nearly two dozen protesters to quell the demonstrations. 

Traditional elders from the region have gathered in Las Anod recently to find a lasting solution to the ongoing regional conflict.

The Somaliland authorities have not yet given any information about the incident in El-Afwayn. The repeated killings by the army and the government’s lack of response have only increased regional tensions.