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Galkaio City, Somalia, October 5th 2001


Deposed Puntland Leader Launches Smear Campaign Against Puntland people

Galkaio City, Somalia, October 5th 2001 – Somali Peace Rally – The Somali Peace Rally (SPR) rejects and condemns the smear campaign of deposed Puntland leader and the other extremist elements of the political groups that he leads against Puntland people. The former Puntland leader recently disseminated baseless statement claiming the existence of Al-Ittahid Al-slam camps in Puntland State of Somalia.

The statement by the former president of Puntland and his political extremist group was aimed to cause serious harm to the interests and image of Puntland people in the region so as to gain financial resources and political support from Ethiopian and US governments, in the light of the current global campaign against terrorism. The fact is that the former Puntland leader's authoritarian character has been rejected by Puntland people and their clan elders.

The former puntland president was expelled from the presidential office in Garowe City in July 2001 by the Puntland Supreme Court. The High Court's decision was not aimed at the Puntland people but at the authoritarian leadership which rejected Puntland legal institutions in order to promote its own self-interest over the interests of Puntland people. The decision of Supreme Court has been supported by Puntland clan elders and the overwhelming majority of Puntland people.

The Puntland High Court and Clan Elders have the authority to remove any official who violates the Charter of Puntland State of Somalia as stated in the 1998 charter. The Puntland High Court's decision was an appropriate response to the authoritarian actions taken by Yousuf.

Deposed Puntland leader is now in Galkaio City in which he carries out a campaign aiming at the destabilisation of the Puntland region through sponsoring militiamen who are trained in killing and massacring activities.

Puntland clan elders and communities met in August 2001 to initiate a formal process of broadened dialogue on moving Puntland forward and strengthening inter-clan cooperation toward sustainable peace and stability. In August 2001, the Chief of Puntland Supreme Court, Yusuf Haji Nur, was elected as acting president of Puntland State of Somalia who has facilitated the current Puntland general congress in Garowe City of Puntland State of Somalia.

The Puntland Congress which was opened on 26 August 2001 in Garowe City of Puntland, has recently concluded the debate on Puntland charter and is now in the process of moving on to the election of the president and vice president of Puntland State.

The current Puntland general congress reflects Puntland people’s confidence in the ability of clan elders and Puntland delegates to conduct Puntland affairs with political maturity, with respect for the rights of all of Puntland's people, and with tolerance for clan differences.

The SPR supports the efforts of the Puntland civil society to strengthen democracy and the rule of law in Puntland.

We strongly condemn the smear campaign led by the deposed Puntland leadership, aimed to mislead international community and harm the image of innocent Puntland people.

Somali Peace Rally, contact e-mail:

Posted October 5, 2001

SPR Previous Press Release
August 20 press release

DISCLAIMER: All opinions and comments appearing here are strictly those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of and its editors.

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