“Somali Federal Minister Brings Historic Visit to Las Anod Despite Ongoing Conflict – Leaves Many Perplexed and Bursting with Questions!”
It was a truly astonishing development that occurred on Saturday May 20, 2023. Jama Hassan Khalif, the highly respected Minister of Communications and Technology in Somalia, made his way to the hotly contested town of Las Anod. This visit was unprecedented, marking the first time that any representative from the federal government had set foot in the city since the conflict ensued between the Northern Somalia army and the SCC-Khatuma forces.
Khalif wasted no time in setting to work, holding intense discussions with the members of the 33rd committee of the SSC. The duration of his stay in town, however, remains shrouded in mystery and uncertainty. This visit comes only a few months after the high-profile visit of former Police Commissioner Abdi Hassan Hijar in late February, making it all the more significant.
The conflict that has engulfed Las Anod, originally sparked by the tragic murder of Northern Somalia politician Abdifatah Hadrawi, has now mutated into a multifaceted political and clan issue. The persistent unrest casts a dark shadow over the potential for peace talks between Somalia and Northern Somalia, as the Northern Somalia administration continues to argue that both Puntland and the federal government have a hand in fueling the war. This claim only further complicates the prospect of dialogue.
On the flip side of the coin, the traditional elders of the SSC-Khatumo faction assert that Northern Somalia has been disseminating misinformation regarding the conflict. They strongly maintain that Puntland forces are not involved in the conflict in Las Anod, and that the local residents are actually defending their city from the invasive actions of the Northern Somalia troops.