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On Thursday, Somaliland President Muse Bihi Abdi accused Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo of Somalia of manipulating the resumption of negotiations between the two countires in Djibouti.

This came after he met the European Union ambassador to Somalia, Nicholas Berlanga, Hargeisa, the capital of Somaliland.

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Besides the President Muse Bihi Abdi, the opposition parties participated in the meeting, as they assured the European Union of the willingness of the Somaliland government to resume negotiations in Djibouti.

According to some sources, Somaliland said that the federal government of Somalia had apologized twice for the start of negotiations again.

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Somaliland says this is time-consuming, and reluctant, from Mogadishu, not to engage in serious discussions on outstanding issues between the two countries by sitting at the direct negotiating table.

According to the observers, Somaliland sees the recent negotiations that started on the fourteenth of last June in Djibouti as a great opportunity, to extract major gains in all levels from Mogadishu, in preparation for international recognition as a country independent of the rest of Somalia.

Having gained its independence from Britain in June 26, 1960, Somaliland was an independent nation before voluntarily entering into a failed union with Somalia in July 1, 1960. However following violations and massacres it had endured by the collapsed military regime in the same year in Somalia, it withdrew from the union and reclaimed its independence on 18 May 1991.

In February 2020, Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed attempted to revive the path of negotiations between the two countries, and was able to hold an informal meeting between President Muse Bihi Abdi and President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo on the sidelines of the last African summit in Addis Ababa.

A proposal was made for the President of Somalia, together with the Ethiopian Prime Minister, to visit Hargeisa, but the Somaliland government refused to receive Farmajo before announcing its recognition as an independent country.

The current round of negotiations came at the invitation of the President of Djibouti, Ismail Omar Guelleh, as his country hosted in the period from 14-18 June 2020, a new session of discussions with the participation of the presidents of the two countries, and the presence of the President of Djibouti, the Ethiopian Prime Minister, the American ambassador to Somalia, and the head of the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD), and European Union representatives.

However, the four-day negotiations did not register any breakthrough because of the two countries’ adherence to their positions.

However, the two countries agreed to resume negotiations in Djibouti after fifteen days to resolve the contentious issues, namely, foreign aid, security and airspace management, and three technical subcommittees were formed to address these issues.

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