Somalia: International Community Condemns Somaliand Over Term Extension

Voting in Somaliland (File photo)

The international community has condemned the move by Somaliland government to extend term in office.

In a press statement, "critical importance of holding the long due Parliamentary and Local Council Elections" and "agreed to hold the elections as soon as they will be politically and technically possible". We are concerned that events have significantly undermined these commitments to the detriment of Somaliland's democratic credentials and international standing"

The leaders from United Nations, IGAD, European Union, United States of America, Germany, United Kingdom, Norway, Ireland, Belgium, Sweden, Denmark, The Netherlands, Finland, France, Italy, Greece, Switzerland endorsed the statement.

They also said they are deeply concerned by instances of seemingly arbitrary detentions and by increased restrictions on freedom of expression.

They singled out the decision of the Guurti to extend both House of Representatives and Guurti's mandates to January 2022 and January 2023 respectively.

" Both Houses, established to represent the women and men of Somaliland, have been sitting for a period much too long by any democratic standards. Local councils have been operating without a democratic mandate since April 2019'.

They demanded that all political actors to reaffirm, through both words and deeds, the long-standing culture of mutual agreement, consensus and compromise, to find a way through this current impasse in order for both parliamentary and local elections to take place without any further delay, well before the end of the calendar year 2020.

"As long-standing partners for the progress of Somaliland during the last 25 years, we praise the ongoing local mediation efforts and underline that for us to support the electoral process, it must promote political inclusiveness and the full respect of the law.

They said only strong, democratically elected institutions can deliver the development outcomes that the people of Somaliland deserve.

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