Saturday, January 21, 2012

Respect the fundamental rights of self determination of Somaliland

Respect the fundamental rights of self determination of Somaliland
Written by Ibrahim M Mead   

open letter

To: the sponsors and organizers of the London conference for Somalia 
cc: the Leadership of Somaliland
cc: the two houses of congress
cc: the traditional leadership of Somaliland 
cc: the civic society of Somaliland 
cc: to whom it may concern

From: Community Advancement through Conflict Resolution International
January 21, 2012

Respect the fundamental rights of self determination of Somaliland

Author's note

This organization (CATCRI) participated the first Municipal, presidential and parliamentary elections in Somaliland as an international observer. I saw democracy in process. I saw how the people and their governments believed the rule of law, decency, stability and peace in their corner of the world. I was there.

My son who is approaching his 30th birth day used to ask me when he first spoke this question, "Why were they doing this to us?" that was when the ethnic cleanings was happening in Somaliland against the majority of the Somalilanders in the 80s! In respond to my son's question I used to say to him, "they were wrong but the end belongs to us, to the righteous" when he grow up and saw the difference of Somaliland and Somalia is between the sky and the earth. When he saw that Somaliland did all the right things and Somalia did all the wrong things he asked me this question, "why their wrongs paid (such that the international community recognized them) and all the right things we did, did not pay?" my answer was the same. "They are wrong, we are right and the end belongs to the righteous, to us if we persevere and be patient" 

The generation who were born after Somaliland withdrew from the failed union with failed Somalia is now 20 years old. They don't understand and it doesn't make a sense to them when Somalia claims that they own us and the international community entertains that nonsense! They only know the currency, the flag and the governmental institutions of Somaliland. The only thing they know of Somalia is misery and mayhem!

Self-determination in general

essentially, the right to self-determination is the right of a people to determine its own destiny. Why do they not want this virtue for the people of Somaliland who worked hard for it?! The international community that is!
The principle allows a people to choose its own political status and to determine its own form of government, its own economic, cultural and social development. 
Exercise of this right can result in a variety of different outcomes ranging from political independence through to full integration within a state. The importance lies in the right of choice, so that the outcome of a people's choice should not affect the existence of the right to make a choice.. Nevertheless, the right to self-determination is recognized in international law as a right of process (not of outcome) belonging to peoples and not to states or governments.

Self-determination in International Law

"The principle of self-determination is prominently embodied in Article I of the Charter of the United Nations? Its inclusion in the UN Charter marks the universal recognition of the principle as fundamental to the maintenance of friendly relations and peace among states. It is recognized as a right of all peoples in the first article common to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights which both entered into force in 1976."
All peoples have the right to self-determination. By virtue of that right they freely determine their political status and freely pursue their economic, social and cultural development.

"The concept of self-determination is a very powerful one. As Wolfgang Danspeckgruber put it: "No other concept is as powerful, visceral, emotional, unruly, as steep in creating aspirations and hopes as self-determination. It evokes emotions, expectations and fears which often lead to conflict and bloodshed. 
Ultimately, the best approach is to view the right to self-determination in its broad sense, as a process providing a wide range of possible outcomes dependent on the situations, needs, interests and conditions of concerned parties. The principle and fundamental right to self-determination of all peoples is firmly established in international law."

Essentially, the right to self-determination is the right of a people to determine its own destiny. 
"The principle allows a people to choose its own political status and to determine its own form of government, its own economic, cultural and social development. 
Exercise of this right can result in a variety of different outcomes ranging from political independence through to full integration within a state, willingly and not by force or coercion. The importance lies in the right of choice, so that the outcome of a people's choice should not affect the existence of the right to make a choice. Nevertheless, the right to self-determination is recognized in international law as a right of process belonging to peoples and not to states or governments."
Cited, UNPO, July 19- 2006) UNPO stands for Unrepresented Nations and Peoples Organization (UNPO) initiated in 1990 in Tartu, Estonia, and formed in 11 February 1991

We applaud and commend the British government and who ever else involved for the up-coming London conference for Somalia to help Somalia which failed to help her self! They had many, many of this kind of conferences out side their soil before and all failed! 

The inclusion and injection of Somaliland in to this Somalia conference as part of Somalia is a fragrant violation of the fundamental rights of Somaliland's self determination. Somaliland never expected this from Britain! 
Somaliland experienced this kind of move from the astronomical conferences for Somalia. Somaliland can not entertain this as they can not stampede the verdict of her people

If the British Government does not want to help Somaliland which was under British Administration in more than 80 years why don't they leave her alone? 
The British government must do either one of the above! No third way in this. 
Why don't they respect the fundamental rights of the people of Somaliland? 
Somaliland worked for that end, and did so in the hard way. Why don't the British respect the self determination of the people of Somaliland who strived for that relentlessly, patiently?

They say the British is pressuring Mr. Siilanyo, the President of Somaliland to attend to an up coming London conference for Somalia when he will be recognized as a representative of a region which is one of the regions of Somalia! Somalia now stands for name only?! No one except his people have the right to urge president Siilanyo to go or not to go to the upcoming London conference! Only his people can, and his people don't see any thing good for Somaliland in the upcoming London conference which is for the troubled Somalia.

Somaliland is not Somalia any more and the conference is for Somalia. The 15th round, if I am not mistaken! Of all the 14 rounds preceded this, Somaliland did not participate because she did not see any thing good for her, and of all these rounds sponsors and Somalia were openly and subtly undermining Somaliland! "Why were they undermining peace and stability in a corner where peace and stability were not known? Why are they repeating the same thing now, of all places in Britain?" Somaliland is wondering!

Trying to put a healthy apple in to a barrel of rotten apples doesn't help any apple! It doesn't make sense! It is undesirable and unacceptable for Somaliland which has chosen it's destiny in 1991 and ever since, she not only survived from all odds, from all destabilizing entities around her, but thrived in comparison to many African countries! Somaliland kept the peace and lived-and- let-others -live in peace.

All peoples have the right to self determination, Somaliland is not the exception in this human rights. By virtue of that right they freely determined their political status and

Freely pursued their economic, social and cultural development

Somaliland recalled and restored its independence and they declared that in Borao convention in 1991 where reconciliation and forgiveness of Somaliland communities took effect after the SNM movement defeated the dictatorial regime of (Siyad Bare) Somalia, and declared the independence of Somaliland there.

.Borama's convention followed this in1993. There a government of national unity was established where by the SNM movement handed over the government to a civilian government headed by president Egale.This was a unique move on the part of SNM. This kind of transferee of government from a front to a civilian in a peaceful and democratic process never happened in any where in the third world or rarely happened! A popular referendum where people voted 97% yes for Somaliland's withdrawal from the union with Somalia followed that in 2001?

The first transfer of power from triumphant movement to a civilian was born there and that took place in a democratic process. That tradition is still going on. Very recently a defeated government conceded and an elected one took over power of government in Somaliland peacefully as expected. Nothing of this magnitude and nothing of this sort ever happened not only in our region but in Africa in general, forget Somalia in this respect!

The UN and its agencies seems as though they say: "why don't you become like your brothers in Somalia! We don't like what you did even though we say we like it! Your wonderful achievement is incongruent to our project which is a troubled Somalia!! Come on board if you need help!"

Somaliland has reached what has been expected from her and beyond! They realized what survivals of ethnic cleansing might not be expected to achieve!
Somaliland gathered what ever was left and built her country from the ashes, abandoned revenge and restitution and moved for ward. They built their country.
In fact they have established a peaceful, democratic and forward moving country
it is time to reward for that. It is not time to undermine this achievement and demolish it!

Where would Somaliland fit in London conference for Somalia?

I think Somaliland would fit in Somalia's conference there where a country helping Somalia would fit. Somaliland is not Somalia as Somalia is not Somaliland whether some deny it or not! If they say it is about peace and the sea pirates they have Somalia which not only accommodates and tolerates this phenomena but is the benefactor of this business. Somaliland has nothing to do and every body knows that. Somaliland is peaceful and they know it! What else? Somaliland must be rewarded and not punished for what she has achieved!!

Somaliland called off that union with Somalia after Somalia executed an ethnic cleansing system in Somaliland. Eventually Somaliland (SNM) defeated Somalia's genocidal regime of Siyad Barre, thus declared her independence by withdrawing the union from them!?They did not chased them for revenge and restitution, they forgot and for give and moved ahead!

Somaliland gave her people peace, stability and all kinds of development; socially, economically and politically which associates with the above virtues of peace and stability according to her ability. Some people don't appreciate this. In fact some people hate that achievement reached by Somaliland people with little help from out side world!

Somaliland succeeded to establish a never-before seen relationship with her neighbours-Ethiopia and Djibouti. They established a people to people movement, and a government to government cooperation and understanding. 
Somalia on the other hand de-stabilized the tranquility and peace of the whole region! And not only that, they destabilized the world- wide shipping in both the Red Sea and the Indian Ocean by investing young sea bandits there Somalia is the benefactor of that!
Somaliland curbed all that evil activity from her shores with little or no help from the international community, all by her self

As Somaliland is not a region, as it is not?a part of Somalia but an independent Republic recognized by her people, under what conditions and terms the UN representative and now the British are insisting or appealing Somaliland to participate the Somalia conference in London! And what terms and conditions Somaliland is offered in this London conference? "What is the deal here?" one my wonder! The people must see what is in and what is not in for Somaliland in Technicolor first?

?It is the aspirations and the self determination of the people that is sacrosanct [ Muqadas] and that is the point. No one else has the right to deny or evade or stampede or twist this inherently human rights for a people strived and spoken loud and clear that they recalled their Republic of Somaliland and got it, be it local or foreign elements or groups!?

Somaliland people have spoken, in no ambiguous terms, in their referendum of 2001. They chose to be independent despite all the odds entailed by this decision. They lived and they live in this situation fine! That is a forgone conclusion. Again, thesacrosanctness of this matter is a non-negotiable bond as far as the people is concerned, thus there is no space for politics for any one while we are not departing flexibility and compromises where possible, like compensation of the thousands of people massacred and the unaccounted material (stolen) owed for Somaliland by Somalia during the ethnic cleansing years. Open borders and trade with Somalia will come when and if they show interest in this venture..

Honesty and steadfastness is the prerequisites for Somaliland leadership to embrace, and those who lead must heed. It also depends on how the Somaliland players push, persist, relentlessly pursue and persevere, the interest of Somaliland as long as it takes. Only those who have the emotional connection to Somaliland can endure this! 
Enforcing Somaliland to this London conference, or similar conferences amounts to creating new wars and destabilizing the peace exiting in Somaliland, deliberately. I trust that no one is intending to do just that.

"Those who faithfully observe their trusts and their covenants and who strictly guard their payers: - these will be the heirs" the righteous will inherit heaven (Al muminoon ch.18-v, 7&8)
Trust may be express or implied. Express trusts are those where property is entrusts or duties are assigned by some one to some other one whom he trusts to carry out on his behalf. 
Implied trusts arise out of power or position or opportunity.
Covenants create obligations. To sum up all, express and implied trusts and covenants taken together cover the whole field of obligation owed for the people and the country of Somaliland.

However peace and prayers 
Ibrahim Mead
Executive Director

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