Leaders from Somalia and Somaliland have held their first formal discussions on the future of the self-proclaimed Somaliland republic.
It broke away in 1991 and wants to be a separate country – but it has not been internationally recognised.
Mogadishu wants the northern territory to be part of a single Somali state.
Since declaring independence, Somaliland has enjoyed relative peace in contrast to the rest of Somalia, which has been plagued by conflict [...]
It was the first time in 21 years that there had been formal, direct contact between the authorities in Mogadishu, and the Somaliland administration, which used to be a British colony, whereas southern Somalia was governed by Italy.
The two sides agreed the talks should continue and, in a declaration, they called on their respective presidents to meet as soon as possible – this could be as early as next week in Dubai.
They also called on the international community to help provide experts on legal, economic and security matters, which our correspondent says are all issues that will need to be addressed in clarifying the future relationship between Somalia and Somaliland.
This is great news! As I have previously argued, bringing in the international community to work with the various Somali factions is a great way to achieve to achieve peace, stability, and prosperity in the Horn of Africa. The only thing better than having two independent Somali states would be to have eight or nine or fifteen Somali states instead. Let’s hope that this trend continues…