24 February 2013

Somalia: Somaliland Deports Somali Lawmaker Accused of Treason

The Somaliland regional government deported Somali parliamentarian Jama Mohamud on Saturday (February 23rd), after a regional court in Marodi-Jeh convicted him of illegal entry on Friday.

The court ordered Mohamud to pay 1 million Somaliland shillings ($151) and to leave Somaliland within 24 hours, according to Deputy Attorney General Said Yusuf Abdi.

Mohamud, a Hargeisa native, was arrested in February on charges of treason for serving in the Somali government.

Mohamud's arrest was based on a resolution passed by the Somaliland parliament in 2003 that forbids people from Somaliland from holding posts in the Somali government. That law was suspended a year ago, however, hence the charges of illegal entry into Somaliland, Abdi told Sabahi.

Although Somaliland declared its independence from Somalia in 1991, the international community has not recognised it as a separate entity. The Somaliland administration this month signalled its willingness to talk to the Somali government, as long as its independence is not up for debate.

Somaliland clan elder Rabi Yusuf Abdullahi, who visited Mogadishu in August during the end of the Transitional Federal Government, faces similar charges and has been in a Hargeisa prison for two weeks.

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