Wednesday January 27, 2021
MOGADISHU (HOL) - Somalia has poured cold water on the newly released IGAD report on tiff with Kenya noting that the findings were not based on factual information from the ground and instead largely relied on Kenyan sources.
Information Minister Osman Dube told journalists the report did not reflect the actual situation on disputes with Kenya adding that Somalia stands by its accusations against its neighbour.
Dube said the eight-member team appointed by Djibouti president who is the current chair of the regional bloc IGAD failed to visit Belet-Hawo which was the flashpoint of clashes between federal forces and Jubbaland troops that Somalia claims were supported by Kenya.
“We invited them to visit Belet-Hawo on two occasions but they declined,” Dube said. The two occasions, Dube said, were when the team visited Mandera in Kenya and Mogadishu. “We told them we will provide security on their visit to Belet-Hawo from Mogadishu but they refused.”In its report which has not been made public yet, the IGAD team concluded there was no sufficient evidence to prove Kenya’s interference and aggression on Somalia.
It added that the allegations against Kenya were not grounded on solid evidence to warrant severance of diplomatic relations.
Somalia announced an end to relations with Kenya November, expelled all diplomatic staff and ambassador and subsequently recalled its ambassador to Kenya. It went ahead to petition IGAD for intervention.
But it has now dismissed the IGAD intervention as largely informed by the Kenyan story.