The people of Somaliland were shocked by the hasty congratulation message of Kulmiye led government in Hargiesa to the selection of Abdi Weli, as leader of Puntland, an autonomous region of Somalia. During his campaign, Abdi Weli vowed to invade Somaliland’s eastern regions.
Abdi Weli, who is leading tribal enclave, claims parts of Somaliland based on clan. He believes that Harti clans in eastern Somaliland must join Puntland, which according to him is a kingdom of Harti kinsfolk. Weli is bribing and brainwashing some of Somaliland’s Harti fugitives using the dirty money that he gained during his premiership in Transitional Government of Somalia, where he was accused for corruption.
Abdi Weli, according to the UN Monitoring Group report, was criticized for endemic corruption alongside other three high-ranking officials in Transitional Federal Government (TFG) of Somalia including former President Sheikh Sharif and the Parliament Speaker. Former Prime Minister Mohamed Farmaajo was, also, accused in the report. Both Abdi Weli and Farmaajo vehemently denied but the stain and accusation are still alive in the minds of the people of Somalia.
Somalia, including Puntland, is at the top of the world’s most failed states because of such corrupted leaders, who fill-up their pockets instead of serving some of the poorest people on earth.
Abdi Weli, who is disconnected from the reality, is planning to unite all the Harti tribesmen under Puntland administration, which means that Puntland will take over parts of Ethiopia and Somaliland. Currently Puntland invades Somaliland and will do the same to Ethiopia.
This policy of invading legitimate countries based on ethnicity was adopted in Somalia after independence. Somalia invaded Ethiopia in 1977, in order to take over Ethiopia’s eastern parts dominated by Somali speaking community. Such policy called “Somaliwayn”.
The government of Somalia is not accepting secession of Somaliland, as an independent nation, because Somaliland is part of Somali-speaking community in east Africa and loosing Somaliland means the end of “Somaliwayn” policy.
Abdi Weli is ready to trigger war with Somaliland as he declared during his campaign. On undeclared visit, Abdi Weli visited Badhan town, which is located inside Somaliland, which led Somaliland authorities to seal-off its border with Somalia.
In his latest misleading acts, Abdi Weli accused Somaliland of having links with Al-Shabaab terrorists without providing material evidence to support the accusation.
Al-Shabab bombed Somaliland presidential palace, Ethiopian embassy and UNDP head office in Hargiesa – Capital of Somaliland. Somaliland is part of war-on-terror and arrested many Al-Shabab members.
Somaliland Intelligence Agency provided critical security information, which helped the UK authorities to fool terrorist attempt in London during 2007. Somaliland collaborates with other regional authorities on security and intelligence information.
Such baseless accusation against Somaliland undermines the international community efforts to solve the longstanding instability of ex-Somali Republic. It undermines the current talk between Somaliland and Somalia in Turkey, in which both countries are deciding on their future political relations.
Last week, Puntland policeman killed two UN aid workers at the day light, which led the UN to shift all its employees to Somaliland.
Somaliland submitted their concerns over Puntland’s untrue accusation to the government of Somalia in Mogadishu.
Somaliland will not allow Abdi Weli to illegally infiltrate into Somaliland border with Somalia again, and Puntland will be responsible for any security instability that could result from such unfriendly situation created by Puntland.
Brief History of Land of Punt
Puntland has twisted the history of Land of Punt to tribal enclave, where the area was turned into crime territory. The human trafficking, where small wooden boat intended to carry lighter cargo used to smuggle thousands of people into Yemen and Arabian Gulf. Thousands of Somalis and Ethiopians lost their life in this risky trip. There are famous Puntland leaders who are involved in such dirty business. Piracy is another lucrative business, although it is declining recently, but still there are cases of piracy reported. Recently Hollywood released movie named ‘Captain Philip’ about the Puntland Piracy. The director carefully selected the actors who were mainly from Puntland.
By naming their state “Puntland,” the leaders of that self-declared autonomous northern Somalia evoke a storied history. The Land of Punt was a key trading partner of ancient Egypt from roughly 2,500 BCE to 1000 BCE. Punt provided rare goods for the Egyptian elite, including aromatic gums (especially myrrh and frankincense), gold, ivory and wild animals, but around 1000 BCE connections were lost, after which the Land of Punt faded into legends, its exact location lost.
Despite heaps of evidence and decades of debate, scholars are not certain where or even what ancient Punt was and where it was.
The exact location of Punt is still debated by historians. Most scholars today believe Punt was located to the southeast of Egypt, most likely in the coastal region of what is today Somaliland, Djibouti, Eritrea, and North East Ethiopia.
The Land of Punt, also called Pewenet, or Pewene by ancient Egyptians was an Egyptian trading partner. The region is known from ancient Egyptian records of trade missions to it.
During Queen Hatsheput the Land of Punt was ruled by King Parahu and Queen Ati, the only known leader of Land of Punt. However, today’s tribe enclave called Puntland twisted the history including Abdi Weli are nothing but leaders of tribe enclave and bogus self-styled leaders who don’t represent the people.
Hatshepsut “maintains the fiction that her envoy” Chancellor Nehsi, who is mentioned as the head of the expedition, had travelled to Punt “in order to extract tribute from the natives” who admit their allegiance to the Egyptian pharaoh. In reality, Nehsi’s expedition was a simple trading mission to a land, Punt, which was by this time a well-established trading post
as I mentioned Scholars have long sought to locate the Land of Punt. Ancient Egyptian sources show that it was reached by sailing down the Red Sea. A location is thus suggested, probably in present day Ethiopia, Eritrea, Somaliland and Djibouti.
However, what the current selected leaders of Puntland are claiming is twisting the history. Note that modern Puntland lies at the extreme margin of the general area hypothesized as the possible Land of Punt.
Today’s piracy enclave of Puntland is not part of Land of Punt as per the below map which shows that self-declared autonomous region of Puntland is not located in the same place as the ancient Land of Punt. Puntland is not alone in being misplaced from its namesake. Several African countries are named for illustrious kingdoms that were situated elsewhere.
Map of Land of Punt
Also, the map shows the location of SULT DEL MIGIURTIN (Majeerteeniya) after independence to be named Majeerteeniya / North East Province of Somali Republic and later after the collapse of central government of Somalia, the region was declared as semi-autonomous region of Puntland. This is the true color of Puntland and it has no relation with Land of Punt, and the last recognized and known King of Land of Punt was King Parahu.
Moreover, the map shows the clear territorial border of Somaliland, Djibouti and Somalia.
Somaliland is peaceful country and promotes peace and harmony in the region. Somaliland is cooperative towards achieving stable and prosperous Horn of Africa. However, Puntland’s illegal attempts to create instability in far east of Somaliland will have painful consequences, knowing that the strong Somaliland Army are at the border between Somaliland and Somalia, which is not far from the main cities of Puntland. Any attempt to violate the international Somaliland-Somalia border will receive strong response.
By\ Abdulaziz Al-Mutairi