Puntland says it will respond to any ‘Aggression’ from Somaliland

The semi-autonomous regional state has on Thursday vowed to take a firm response to any ”aggression” from the Somalia’s breakaway region of Somaliland.

The move came barely two months after forces from Somaliland and Puntland clashed in Sool region where over ten people lost their lives.

The governor of Nugaal region, Omar Abdullahi Afweyne accused Somaliland of deploying clerks and ballot papers in the region.

“Puntland will quickly respond and swift action of Somaliland fails to stop the aggression,” said Afweyne.

Puntland had several times accused Somaliland of financing and training the Al-Shabaab militants hiding in Galgala mountain ranges, though the separatist region has denied the accusations.

Both Somaliland and Puntland are in the north of the Horn of Africa nation and have enjoyed relative peace, while the south of the country has been mired in anarchy since the 1991 ouster of dictator Mohamed Siad Barre.

Somaliland, formerly the colony of British Somaliland, claims independence as a sovereign nation.

Puntland remains part of greater Somalia but generally administers its own affairs through its own military and government institutions.

The two have fought for years over the Sool and Sanag regions, part of which Puntland claim on an ethnic basis while Somaliland says they are part of its territory under the colonial border Britain left.

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