Somalilandsun- REPRESENTATIVES of a former British colony which has run its own affairs for nearly 30 years hope Brexit will at last get it international recognition.
Somaliland, which broke away from Somalia in 1992 after a bloody civil war, now has stability while its bigger neighbour is a failed and lawless state.
The Somali community in Wales is around 8,000 strong, and wants Somaliland to get official status.
Community leader Eid Ali Ahmed, a consultant who works with the Somaliland government, said: “It seems ridiculous that while the UK Government has provided tens of millions in aid to Somaliland, it doesn’t recognise us as an independent state.
The lack of international recognition makes it much harder to get private-sector inward investment, especially as the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) lumps in Somaliland with Somalia in its travel advice and suggests it is not a safe place to visit.
“We are hoping that Brexit will lead to a change in position. The EU is against recognition, partly because Italy, the former colonial power for Somalia, doesn’t accept it.”
An FCO spokeswoman said: “The UK does not recognise Somaliland as an independent state. We firmly believe that it is for Somaliland and the Federal Government of Somalia to decide their future, and for neighbours in the region to take the lead in recognising any new arrangements. We continue to encourage plans for dialogue between the Federal Government of Somalia and the Somaliland government.”