Traditional elders accuse Somaliland of indiscriminate bombing in Las Anod as conflict escalates

Traditional elders from the SSC-Khatumo region have accused Somaliland of indiscriminately bombing Las Anod on Saturday, resulting in civilian casualties and widespread devastation.

While official casualty figures have not been released, the attack has contributed to the ongoing conflict between the two factions that has been ongoing for the past six months.

Artillery exchanges between the SSC-Khatumo group and the Somaliland government have been reported in some media outlets, leading to over 299 fatalities, over 1,913 injured, and the displacement of over 150,000 individuals.

The SSC-Khatumo Council has appealed to the Somali government and the international community for intervention, demanding protection for the residents of Las Anod and justice for the crimes committed.

The Council is calling for an immediate cessation of military operations in the area, and for the Somaliland government to withdraw its forces from the disputed region.

Tensions escalated after the Dhulbahante clan declared its autonomy from the Somaliland government on February 6, prompting a repositioning of Somaliland forces about 50km westward.

The SSC suspects that the attacks on Las Anod were initiated from these new locations.

In response to the escalating violence, the Security Council has urged an immediate withdrawal of Somaliland’s security forces from the disputed region. It has also called on all involved parties to show restraint, avoid using inflammatory language, and refrain from actions that could provoke further conflict. According to the Council, these steps are critical to de-escalating the situation, rebuilding trust, and paving the way for peace.

The international community has expressed deep concern over the ongoing conflict, urging all parties to prioritize dialogue and peaceful resolution of the dispute. The African Union has also called for an immediate end to the violence, and for all parties to respect the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Somalia.

The situation in Las Anod remains tense, with the possibility of further clashes between the two sides. The international community continues to monitor the situation closely, and is calling on all parties to work towards a peaceful resolution of the conflict.

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