Somalia says it had no agreement with UAE on Berbera Port

By Asad Cabdullahi Mataan

Somalia has distanced itself from remarks made by the UAE this week after the UAE insinuated that they had reached an agreement with the previous government of Somalia over the Berbera port.

UAE government on Wednesday said it had signed MoU with Somali government over the controversial Berbera deal.

Speaking to BBC Somali service, Somali Minister for Foreign Affairs, Ahmed Issa Awad dismissed claims by UAE, saying the two governments had no official deal about Dubai’s port agreement with Somaliland.

“If there is an understanding, then the understanding can be categorized into two, verbal discussions and written understanding like Memorandum of understanding  (MoU). We were not shown documentation and if UAE could have shown us written proof, then our leaders have would probably take another decision,” Awad said.

He refuted the reports claiming the government knew in advance the money seized in Mogadishu Airport was coming for the troops.

The minister said the diplomatic row between the two countries worsened by UAE’s infringement on Somalia’s sovereignty and unity.

“The dispute started as a result of the violation of Somalia’s sovereignty and Unity but the cash the seized came, later on, The cash brought into the country when there was political Crisis. The (seizure of) money had taken place just a day before the motion against the speaker  (Jawari) was to be debated on,”

Awad confirmed that Somalia will release the funds seized in Mogadishu Airport early this month.

“Somali government will let go the funds after the (Security) agencies conclude the ongoing investigations,” he pledged.

The minister said several ally governments were carrying out initiatives to mediate Somalia and UAE.

“There are several countries trying to intervene the situation, among them, are, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Ethiopia and others,” said the minister.

Source: Hol