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This article investigates the legal understandings of statehood, from the Montevideo Convention to the more recent emphasis on self-determination, and then turns to the case of Somaliland, arguing that Somaliland deserves statehood status and other states should recognize it as a state as there is no legal ground under international law that justifies an otherwise position.


Beijing Law Review, 2019, 10, 196-211
http://www.scirp.org/journal/blr
ISSN Online: 2159-4635
ISSN Print: 2159-4627

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Declaration Of Statehood By Somaliland And The Effects Of Non-Recognition Under International Law

By Temesgen Sisay Beyene*

Department of Law, School of Law, Bahir Dar University, Bahir Dar, Ethiopia

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Abstract

After the downfall of the Socialist and military Siyad Barre regime in Somalia, Somaliland took an immediate action of independent declaration of statehood from its failed “parental state”, Somalia. It has been almost twenty-five years since Somaliland declared its independence, established its own government, kept the peace, and managed to flourish in a kind of stability. Nevertheless, the international community has not recognized its act. Among the former Somali Republic territories, it is now only Somaliland that secured democratic and stable government and sustainable peace in the region. Somalia, which was part and “heir” of the former Somali Republic, is now unstable and even challenged by the Islamist extremist group, Al-Shabaab. Somaliland, once under the colonial power of the British Empire like other African countries, argues it should be recognized as an independent state. This article investigates the legal understandings of statehood, from the Montevideo Convention to the more recent emphasis on self-determination, and then turns to the case of Somaliland, arguing that Somaliland deserves statehood status and other states should recognize it as a state as there is no legal ground under international law that justifies an otherwise position.

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