Northern Somalia’s Officers Defect and Join Ranks with SSC-Khatumo Forces in Las Anod, Leaving Many Perplexed with Bursting Emotions

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It was a perplexing turn of events as news broke on Friday May 12, 2023, that a faction of Northern Somalia army officers had defected and pledged allegiance to the SSC-Khatumo forces. The identities of these officers remain shrouded in mystery, but it has been revealed that they were stationed in the Sama-Kaab region and hailed from the Sool, Sanaag, and Ayn regions.

In Las Anod, top traditional clan chief Garad Jama Garad Ali, along with other officials, warmly welcomed the officers and expressed satisfaction that they had taken a stand against oppression and violence towards the SCC community. Garad Ismail underscored the strategic importance of the officers in the Sama-Kaab area and encouraged other officers with familial ties to the SCC region currently serving in the Northern Somalia army to consider defecting.

In a bold move, Garad Jama called for the president of Northern Somalia to withdraw his troops from Las Anod to prevent the conflict from escalating, declaring that the time for unity between Northern Somalia and the SSC-Khatumo forces was now over.

Adding to the burstiness of the situation, Education Commissioner for Northern Somalia’s Sool region, Dahir Mohamed Ahmed, also joined the SSC-Khatumo movement just a day before this group defection. Ahmed received a warm reception from traditional elders, including Las Anod Mayor Abdihakin Ali Ismail and military officers. He pledged his commitment to aid the Sool, Sanaag, and Ayn communities in their efforts to reunify with the federal government.

Earlier this week, another undisclosed number of defectors, including a military commander from Northern Somalia, also joined the SSC-Khatumo forces in the Sool region, earning commendation from SSC-Khatumo Commander Abdi Madobe for their cooperation with local forces. The situation in this region of Somalia remains highly unpredictable and nebulous.

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