UN envoy urges peaceful prisoner swap between Somaliland and SSC-Khatumo administration

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The Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Somalia, Catriona Laing, has called on the SSC-Khatumo administration and Somaliland to peacefully exchange their captured prisoners of war.

Both sides have taken prisoners during the recent eight-month conflict in Las Anod, with most detainees currently held by the SSC-Khatumo administration.

The UN Special Representative and other top officials were speaking in the Somali capital, Mogadishu, on Wednesday to commemorate UN Day. During her speech, Catriona Laing urged the parties to refrain from further violence in Las Anod. She stressed the need to resolve the conflict between SSC and Somaliland peacefully, emphasizing the United Nations’ commitment to supporting peace efforts and conflict resolution.

She added that the situation in Las Anod remains a top priority for the United Nations.

In September, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) visited more than 300 detainees captured during recent clashes between the Somaliland army and SCC-Khatumo forces in Las Anod town.

Pascal Cuttat, the head of the ICRC delegation in Somalia, confirmed that the Geneva-based organization had also visited Hargeisa Central Prison, where SSC-Khatumo inmates are held. However, the specific number of detainees observed in the capital of Somaliland was not disclosed.

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