Press Release

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Somaliland has reviewed the Heritage Institute policy brief titled “Ethiopia’s MoU with Somaliland,” which alleges a threat to Somalia’s sovereignty and regional stability. Our assessment finds the brief to be distorted, laden with political rhetoric akin to that of the Mogadishu government and is aimed at lending academic legitimacy to recent ramblings of Hassan Sh Mahmoud.

Furthermore, the assertion that the MoU may fuel recruitment for Al Shabab lacks conclusive evidence and is speculative. Extremist groups like Al Shabab operate beyond borders, driven by a broader ideological agenda rather than specific territorial disputes. The brief also overlooks the Mogadishu government’s repeated failures in combating Al Shabab effectively.

It is important to recognize that Al Shabab’s emergence stems from conditions of lawlessness, warlordism, and poverty, rather than fueled by animosity towards Ethiopia or neighboring countries. Their continued existence is facilitated by weak administrative institutions within Somalia, which fail to address the fundamental needs of their citizens.

Moreover, successive governments in Mogadishu have become complacent in managing the conflict, prioritizing external donor engagements over domestic responsibilities.

Academic research consistently highlights the correlation between poverty, violence, and the proliferation of organized crime and militancy, undermining claims of a direct link between regional agreements and the resurgence of such groups.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs reaffirms Somaliland’s sovereignty and independence, achieved through the sacrifices of its people. Despite minimal foreign assistance, Somaliland has effectively governed itself for 33 years and will continue to do so despite Mogadishu’s unfounded claims.

It is imperative for Mogadishu and its intellectuals to recognize the changing dynamics of the world, transcending past animosities and towards mutual economic cooperation and respect. The historic MoU between Ethiopia and Somaliland signifies a Positive step towards regional stability and prosperity.