Mogadishu (Caasimada Online) – Eighteen individuals who have been severely injured in the ongoing conflict between the Somaliland military and the SSC-Khatumo forces in Laascaanood were transported to Mogadishu for medical treatment on Thursday.
The victims were transported from the Garowe airport in the Puntland capital and were welcomed by government representatives who had traveled to the region to assess the humanitarian situation and provide aid and medicine.
The Somalia Disaster Management Agency, under the Office of the Prime Minister, has signaled its readiness to support the victims and address the situation, and has requested assistance from international organizations.
The Puntland Minister of Health, Jama Farah Hassan, expressed gratitude towards the regional and federal government agencies for their aid to the affected individuals, saying, “We are truly grateful for the support from our government and regional agencies. These individuals desperately need medical attention, and we are grateful for their aid in getting them the help they need.”
The President of Somalia, Hassan Sheikh Mohamud, has called for an end to the conflict, urging both the SSC-Khatumo and Somaliland officials to immediately stop the fighting in Laascaanood.
“The solution to the problems in Sool and Sanag lies within the realm of politics. The will of the people cannot be resolved through the use of force. Their will must be respected, weapons must be laid down, hostilities must cease, and a negotiating table must be set,” the president said.
President Mohamud has also signaled the federal government’s readiness to participate in and facilitate a peace conference to resolve the tense situation in the town, saying, “The federal government is ready to participate in and facilitate a peace conference to resolve the situation in Laascaanood. It is time for both sides to come to the negotiating table and find a peaceful resolution to this conflict.”
The tension in Laascaanood has been escalating over the past month due to the local population’s opposition to the presence of Somaliland’s administration and the demand for the withdrawal of its troops.
Despite controlling the regions of Sool, Sanag, and Cayn for over 15 years, Somaliland has faced opposition and resentment in the area.
The current crisis was triggered by the assassination of local youth leader and opposition Waddani Party member Abdifatah Abdullahi Abdi (Hadrawi), which was blamed on Somaliland.
The Somaliland security forces have used force to quell the situation, leading to casualties and further fueling the conflict.