The UN Security Council is taking decisive action following a thematic report submitted by the Panel of Experts on Somalia, aiming to address the country’s ongoing conflict and humanitarian crisis, particularly in the embattled city of Las Anod.
The report, in line with paragraph 47 (c)(i) of resolution 2662 (2022), has prompted the Security Council Committee to pursue follow-up actions on its recommendations, targeting Al-Shabaab and individuals responsible for international law violations. According to the statement, these violations include targeted attacks on civilians, notably children and women, and obstructions to humanitarian assistance – actions condemned globally and identified in the Council’s press statement on June 7, 2023 (SC/15313).
“The people implicated in killings, maiming, sexual and gender-based violence, attacks on schools and hospitals, and forced displacement could face designations by the Committee as per resolution 1844 (2008) and subsequent resolutions,” the statement said.
In coordination with humanitarian agencies, the Committee called on the Federal Republic of Somalia and all parties to the conflict to ensure humanitarian access and permit access to Las Anod for explosive ordnance disposal teams, such as the United Nations Mine Action Service and other relevant organizations.
The recent unrest in Las Anod began on December 26 with the assassination of a local opposition politician and prominent member of Somaliland’s Waddani National Party, Abdifatah Abdullahi Abdi (Hadrawi), by unknown assailants, which sparked anti-Somaliland government demonstrations throughout the city.
Somaliland’s security forces responded by indiscriminately shooting at unarmed protesters, which led to heavy fighting between the local forces and the Somaliland army.
A month ago, SCC-Khatumo local forces ousted the Somaliland army from the SCC-Khatumo areas following over eight months of conflict between the two sides.
Somaliland President Muse Bihi Abdi, speaking a day after the SCC forces seized Somaliland’s main base, Gojacade, outside Las Anod, admitted that his troops had suffered their biggest setback during the eight months of conflict in the vicinity of Las Anod town.