19 May 2007 04:14


SW News
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  • Date :[10-Apr-2000 12:00:00 am]



BBC Monitoring Service - United Kingdom ; 10-Apr-2000 12:00:00 am

President Muhammad Ibrahim Egal last night held a banquet in honour of a six-member Italian delegation. The delegation is visiting the Horn of Africa region with the objective of assessing the situation in the region in general, and in particular, the Ethiopian-Eritrean conflict and the Somali problem...

The two sides exchanged views and the delegation said they were informed of Somaliland's opposition to the Djibouti peace proposal for Somalia.

The Somaliland president, Hon Muhammad Ibrahim Egal, also explained in detail Somaliland's point of view on how to achieve peace in what used to be called the Republic of Somalia.

He said a genuine reconciliation process should be undertaken in southern Somalia to resolve the leadership crisis there. Mr Egal further said this would create a conducive environment to discuss the relations between the south and Somaliland.

Hon Egal also briefed the delegation on the history of Somaliland's struggle to achieve peace, tranquillity and the formation of administrative structures, all achieved after a long period without any support from the international community.

President Egal stressed that the international community should not overlook the reason why the Somaliland people decided to regain their independence through popular demand. He said: They should take note of what we have achieved for ourselves throughout this period.

He said the wounds of injustice, inflicted on the people of Somaliland, was still fresh in their memories and the mass graves of the people of Somaliland reminded them every day of the injustice committed against them.

President Egal also briefed the delegation on Somaliland's view on the Djibouti peace proposal for Somalia. He said the Djibouti initiative should only be confined to reconciling southern factions, saying Somaliland was ready to contribute towards such a reconciliation process.

Mr Egal said: It is not fair to interpret our stand as opposition to our brother's reconciliation initiative to achieve peace in the south. We want them to reconcile urgently so that we can resolve all the issues that we want to discuss with them. What Somaliland does not want is to involve itself in the conflict between the southern factions. He said that would lead to the destruction of what the Somaliland people had already achieved in the past nine years. It was very unfair for Somaliland to be tied up with the south in all these years, he said.

The ceremony was also attended by the chairpersons of the Somaliland parliamentary committees and senior government officials.

The delegation is expected to leave Hargeysa this morning.

Source: `Mandeeq', Hargeysa, in Somali 10 Apr 00 p 2

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