JEDDAH (Somalilandpress) — Somaliland’s president Dahir Rayale Kahin on Saturday received an invitation to visit Saudi Arabia from Saudi officials, sources said.

Mr Rayale is expected to make his first trip to the oil-rich kingdom later this week after receiving an invitation from Saudi leaders according to sources in Jeddah. “The invitation to Somaliland’s leader was extended after  Saudi officials held talks with Somaliland’s ministers currently in the Kingdom and Saudi tycoon Suleiman Al Jabri – a major investor in Somaliland” the source said.

Al Jabri completed a livestock quarantine facility in the Somaliland red sea port of Berbera at a cost of $5-million after he gained exclusive rights to export Somaliland livestock to the Saudi kingdom estimated to be worth around $250 million annually. Somaliland aviation minister, minister of Presidential residence, and the minister of Religion affairs are currently in Saudi Arabia.

In October this year, Saudi Arabia, once a large trading partner with Somaliland, lifted an embargo on Somaliland livestock that crippled the economy of this unrecognised republic for the past 10 years.

The ban on Somaliland livestock was believed to be politically motivated even though Saudi officials insisted it was to control unwarranted fears concerning a Rift Valley Fever, which had occurred shortly after massive rains in Kenya in 1998.

Insiders have always seen Saudi Arabia along with Egypt, as a major stumbling block to Somaliland’s international recognition and statehood.

Arab world is the largest importer of food and due to international food price fluctuations many Arab states have shifted their policies towards east African countries in recent times.

“The import will bring down cattle prices in the domestic market on the one hand and end the hardship faced by importers, particularly during the Haj season,” Suleiman Al-Jabri told Arabnews.

It is not clear how long president Rayale will stay in the Saudi Kingdom but diplomatic tie with regional and international player like Saudi Arabia will be a step forward for Somaliland’s international quest for recognition.

No immediate comment was available from the government. We could not reach the Presidential spokesman for comment.

[Picture/ Suleiman Al Jabri in Berbera – Somalilandnation 2009]



  1. I hope this meeting is nothing more than just that, a meeting. I don't think we should trust Saudi Arabia, the home of destructive extremism, and if they offer any help we should turn it down lest they attempt to influence our politics in return for it.

  2. Somaliland should engage all nations. Undoubtedly the Saudi's will bring up the issue of the old defunct union, but, Somaliland should make it clear, whilst there will always be social, economic and cultural links, there can never be, again, a political tie..

    Somaliland was an independent state in 1960, and is once again, a sovereign nation. It is the wish of the people of Somaliland. Almost 30 years of a union with Somalia brought nothing but death and destruction, and there is no going back.

    Somalilanders wish the people of Somalia well, and hope that they will follow the blueprint of dialogue, discussion and consensus, but Somaliland is now and forever will be a sovereign nation.

  3. somaliland nowadays become famous for the Saudi Arabia for the relationship between two country and its good opportunity that to declare our issue of the somaliland independence for recognizing our country and thinks president of somaliland and its cabin ate will explain more information our really issue

  4. Somalilanders in Suadi Arabia need to support Somaliland's quest by showing up and speaking to the Saudis be more involved

  5. Somaliland should be vigilant and extremely prudent in its dealings with the Arabs espcially Saudi Arabia. My gut feeling is that we should find other markets for our livestocks, and not rely on a snake like saudi Arabia.

  6. Somaliland's concept of Hybrid democracy is a threat to the saudi monarch system because the similarities between the two societies both are muslim and both are build on tribes, so saudi arabia will never be on good terms with Somaliland.

    Secondly in times of an upcoming election each party need as much publicity as they can get, especially the ruling party UDUB, I really doubt that such an invitation exists because if there was we would of heard about it from the Spokesman of the presidency not some unknown source.

  7. There you go Mr.Good Citizen, throw in some politics. I guess you won't be satisfied until the president is in Saudi Arabia. Keep your eye on the websites and the radio, and the tv, etc..

    This isn't about UDUB, KULMIYE, or UCID, it is about engaging a powerful, rich and influential nation. Whether Somaliland is a threat to the Saudi politics, is neither here nor there. The Saudi's see the writing on the wall in Somalia and Yemen. Somaliland is the only beacon in the region, and it has dawned on them, that it is time to get serious about Somaliland.

  8. Dont trust anyone and any country, not just the Saudis, the world has became full of greed and corruption. It is about to come to an end.

    Saudis want Somaliland to send forces for the TFG in return Saudi will resume the livestock and give huge aid to Somaliland, we need to reject this because Saudis need to know Somaliland survived 10 years without their livestock, they released and now want to be on their knees for us.

    No wahabism in Somaliland.