Somaliland makes case for sovereignty, 31 years after declaring independence

By Fred Harter
Posted on Thursday, 4 August 2022 10:42

Somaliland Autonomous Region
Women march in a procession to celebrate the 25th anniversary of proclaimed independence in the capital Hargeisa, Somaliland on Wednesday, May 18, 2016. (AP Photo/Barkhad Dahir)

Not much happens in Hargeisa, Somaliland’s capital, but that's how most residents prefer it.

The main attraction is a memorial with a Somali Air Force jet that bombed the city during the territory’s independence war in the 1980s. There is another featuring the replica of a tank, beneath which goats sometimes lounge as traffic passes by.

“Nearly all the buildings you see in Hargeisa today are new,” says Ayan Mahmoud, Somaliland’s former diplomatic representative to London. “The city was bombarded so heavily there was barely anything left.”