By: Yumoha Pasha
Somaliland sun- – Authorities in Ankara have one objective from the talks it host between Somalia and Somaliland, the return to greater Somalia status that ended in 1991.
This was revealed by the Turkish Envoy to Somalia, Ambassador Olgan Bekar during an interview with VOA in which he became the first to officially and publicly reveal intentions of the Ankara based government in its mediation role between Somaliland and Somalia.
The administration of President Recep Tayip Erdogan has been hosting international sanctioned talks between the two formerly united countries from the Horn region since 2013, though nothing of substance has been achieved to date not to mention that the talks are in an indefinite abeyance.
“In our mediation role in the talks hosted by Turkey, our intent is to resuscitate the defunct republic of Somalia through return of Somaliland to its union with Somalia” said Amb Bekar adding that dialogue is the chosen path onwards realization of the pre-1991 status.
Stressing on the fact that the negotiations between Hargeisa and Mogadishu authorities shall ultimately come to frustration, the Turkish diplomat said that the Ankara government is currently utilizing its mediation role to reconcile the diverse positions taken by the two formerly united countries.
During the entire process of the talks that ensued courtesy of agreement reached at the U.K. Hosted Somalia conference in which the international community advised dialogue between the two as only path to either Separation or reunion, Turkey has been unable to bring the two negotiating team to any sort of concession on anything, due to the diversity of positions.
For the negotiators from Hargeisa the talks pertain to peaceful divorce thence have nothing to do with the sovereignty of their country Somaliland which is not only irreversible but non negotiable as well.
On the same table are the Mogadishu negotiators who maintain that Somaliland is still the northwest region of Somalia thence discussions in Turkey only related to establishing mechanisms for reestablishing the defunct greater republic of Somalia that collapsed in 1991 through recanting of sovereignty by their Hargeisa counterparts.
On the issue of the stalled talks , Amb Olgan Bekar said the prolonged postponement is as per a request by Somalia whose justification is the ongoing electoral process, which the Ankara and Hargeisa governments accepted.
“The importance of the elections in Somalia to the talks is that an elected government shall be able to pursue negotiations with full mandate from its citizens, just like that of Somaliland where the government is out in office through a democratic process” Said Amb Bekar.
Though many especially in Somaliland have been suspicious of the Turkish authorities as pertains to impartiality in its mediation role, that has gone as far as to see the government of president Silanyo with full support from the citizenry, demand international observers in future sessions , the overt acknowledgment by Amb Bekar, which is clearly a negation of the Somaliland sovereignty, places Hargeisa and Ankara at loggerheads
In the meantime and with the Turks having let the greater Somalia cat out of the box , which is a taboo subject in Somaliland it remains to be seen where and how the Ankara mediator role manages to be effective.