Fire in the forest home to unique, rare flora, and fauna started Sunday, the village has been on high alert, says the Gaacidh village chairman
A wildfire in the Gaacidh forest in the eastern Sanaag region of Somaliland is burning from an undetermined cause, authorities said Tuesday.
The fire in the forest that is described as one of the most beautiful in the region and home to unique trees and dozens of fauna started two days ago near the Daalo mountain and has not been contained.
No casualties have been reported, according to officials.
The commander of the Sanaag Regional Police in Somaliland, Saleban Duale Ibahle, stated that they are investigating the cause of the fire.
Sanaag regional police commander Saleban Du’ale Ibahle, reports on the cause of the fire, as well as new orders for residents on the mountain. pic.twitter.com/dP9XYSoWyB
— Abdibasid Sh Bashir (@abdibasidshe) July 5, 2022
But the locals have pointed to various factors that could have caused fires, including climate change, deforestation, etc. Experts also believe that climate change brings more drought and higher temperatures that make it easy for fires to start and spread.
Gaacidh village chairman Salad Salah Mohamed told state-run television that “the fire started on Sunday at 5:00 pm, and the village has been on high alert since Sunday. Storms are present in the summer. A fire alarm has been transmitted to the government authorities, but the fire still exists.”
Somaliland environmentalist, botanist, and author Ahmed Ibrahim Awale said the forest “is the best preserved Juniperus procera-Dracaena schizantha mixed woodland in the Horn of Africa and it well deserves to be declared a World Heritage Natural Site.”
The spread of the fire is accelerated by strong winds and dry vegetation. The cause is yet to be determined, but climatic conditions are said to play a major role in the spread of the blaze that is growing daily.
Somaliland has already been struggling with the effects of climate change and this fire in the forest comes at a time the county is experiencing the worst drought in decades.
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