By Matthew Russell Lee
UNITED NATIONS, September 28 — After in Somaliland a petition was announced, with a million signatures, seeking recognition of independence, Inner City Press put the question on September 27 to UN envoy Michael Keating, video here.
He said he’s been asked to get more involved – but what does that mean?
He told Inner City Press he is unaware of the tariff / recognition issue with Kenya, and that he has not met with the UN’s new Resident Coordinator for Kenya, Ban Ki-moon’s son in law, during the ten days the latter has been in New York.
Keating gave a useful explanation of the Somali president being in caretaker mode; it was the foreign minister who spoke in the General Assembly debate and meets Ban Ki-moon on September 28.
Earlier on September 27 Inner City Press asked UK Deputy Permanent Representative to the UN of the UK, Peter Wilson, video here.
Wilson said Somaliland is “complex,” but that he expected it to be turned to in the Security Council consultations later that morning.
From the UN transcript:
Inner City Press: This is a Somaliland question – I’ve asked Ambassador Rycroft before – there is this petition of a million people in Somaliland who try to say that they should be recognized. It any or may not be realistic. But what does the UK government think of the place of Somaliland in the greater Somalia in the process that you’re dealing with here?
Wilson: Well, I think for the process of the elections what we’re most keen to ensure is that there’s as much participation as possible. The issue of Somaliland is a very complex one, but it’s one that I’m expecting that we will turn to in consultations.
Back on August 23, Inner City Press first asked UK Permanent Representative Matthew Rycroft, Beyond The Vine here, UK transcript here:
Inner City Press: Ambassador, is the Council working on anything on Somalia and the terrorist attack in Puntland? And are you aware of this Somaliland petition that supposedly asks for recognition of Somaliland as independent with a million signatures?
Amb Rycroft: I will get back to you on both of those things. We did have a presidential statement on Somalia, which set out the Security Council’s disappointment with the delay with the elections. That was the last action on Somalia that we had here. But as pen holder, we will pursue both those points.
As noted, the Security Council Presidential Statement doesn’t mention Somaliland. And while the US on August 21 condemned the attack in Puntland, the UN and its Security Council have yet to. Watch this site.
Earlier this year when UN Relief Chief Stephen O’Brien came to answer questions on February 9 about the UN’s report for the upcoming World Humanitarian Summit, Inner City Press asked him why his Central Emergency Relief Fund gave funds to Ethiopia but not Somaliland, given FAO’s finding of drought. Video here.
O’Brien answered that aid access in Yemen is key, and said there is no legal impediment to CERF funds for Somaliland.
Now in April 2016, after the UN of Ban Ki-moon and USG Cristina Gallach ousted then evicted Inner City Press from the UN on April 16 (video here and here; more info here) and tore the Free UN Coalition for Access sign off the office door, FUNCA member Mohamoud Walaaleye has raised the issued, and interviewed Dick Trenchard, Head FAO Somalia and Somaliland. According to Mohamoud Walaaleye’s reporting, FOA’s Trenchard said
“We are re-programming, and bringing resources another parts of our program, like Somalia, and three million arrived yesterday. We will done a lot cash for work, that put cash people’s pockets. They can buy seeds, and we are looking working now Government’s ministry of Agriculture, how we can help them provide vouchers to farmers, and it’s our priority. This was discussed during meeting Mr. de Clerk had with President Sillanyo… I am proud of the handover to the Vice President of six thousand and one hundred, local initiative FAO Somaliland office staff contributed drought assistance, and I am really proud of it. I think it expresses and captures the passion of FAO team here in Hargeisa, we are all people who really care food security of Somaliland, the contribution is small amount, when looked needs, but, on the other hand it shows our serious and massive commitment working as hard as we can and people are passionate contributing as well.”
We’ll have more on this.
The new Free UN Coalition for Access seeks to open the UN and these processes – watch this site.
Source: Inner City Press