The Las Anod conflict has morphed from a mere anti-government protests to a perpetual war that has lead to deaths and displacement of families.
Among the affected families is that of Fahima Yussuf Quje , a former Member of Assembly in the Local Council. Her’s is a story of how the Las Anod conflict broke her family ties.
While her her ex-spouse Mustaf Shiino is from Hargeisa and is a former District Commissioner in Sool and a staunch supporter of Somaliland Fahima is from the Laascaanod town which is fighting to secede from Somaliland and re-join Somalia.
Her children now find themselves torn by this political divisions.
“My daughter ‘s father is shelling us and has gone public on TV saying Las Anod should remain part of Somaliland or be destroyed if it’s residents choose to rejoin Somalia.” Fahima told Dalsan TV
“He knows his daughter is in this town with all the shelling imagine. And am here defending my hometown. Thats the reality of how my family is torn apart” Fahima said in the interview.
She blames her ex-husband for fueling the stand off that has seen Somaliland Army fight Dhulubahante fighters.
The two met in Las Anod years before she entered into local government politics and got married and a daughter was born. The husband was a newly appointed Mayor who hailed from the capital Hargeisa.
It’s not only her former spouse that’s geared to fight against a region they have native ties to but also her uncle currently fields for Somaliland army shelling the grey area.
Fahima fears that their would be more bloodshed as Muse Bihi led administration would not relent in allowing their prized asset slip away in their pursuit for ratification as an independent nation and SSC region would not tail off till they cut ties with Hargeisa led administration.
The 2023 Las Anod conflict erupted on February 6 after Somaliland security forces held a violent crackdown on civil protests. Two days later the Supreme Garad of Dhulbahante, Garad Jama Garad Ali, declared an intent to secede and reunite with the Federal Government of Somalia.
The conflict has killed more than 145 people and displaced 100,000 refugees.
Despite local and international calls for a cease-fire, fighting has continued, raising fears of a full-blown humanitarian crisis amid a biting drought that has already affected thousands of people in the contested region.