Somaliland International Recognition Action Group(S.I.R.A.G) London, UK 07/01/2007

Press Release

Immediate Release

Somaliland International Recognition Action Group(SIRAG) condemns the wrongful arrests of the executive journalists of Haatuf Media Organisation whose names are Yusuf Abdi Gabobe, Ali Abdi Dini and Hussein Khalif Abdillahi. The government of the Republic of Somaliland have arrested these journalists without any proper trial whatsoever violating both the constitution of Somaliland and the human rights of these professional journalists.

Haatuf is one of the leading Media organisations in the Republic of Somaliland and has millions of readers both in Somaliland and in the Diaspora. Haatuf Media has always been an icon of Somalilandís freedom of speech and a pillar of Somalilandís thriving Democracy.

The rights of freedom of expression is part and parcel of not only the constitution of Somaliland but is also a God given Right. Justice can be upheld and oppression defeated only if the freedom of speech and expression are exercised independently without fear and intimidation by any government. The nation and citizens of Somaliland have a patriotic duty to defend the rights of the arrested journalists following the guidelines and principles laid down in the constitution of Somaliland.

SIRAG appeals to the parliament, civil societies, and media organisations of the Republic of Somaliland to honour their collective responsibilities and challenge the government of Somaliland to free the journalists of Haatuf without any further delay. This wrongful arrest is going to shake the very foundation of our democracy, constitution and will hamper our quest for International Recognition.

Somaliland as a nation is new to the principles of democracy and it is important that we stand in solidarity with the Free Press and support Somalilandís Media Organisations to bring justice for the rights of their staff and challenge the government of Somaliland to stop violating the constitution of Somaliland as well as the rights of the citizens of Somaliland. We would like to remind the government of Somaliland that the freedom of expression and speech have always been part and parcel of the Somaliland Culture which is one of the success factors that makes Somaliland an oasis of peace and stability in the Horn of Africa.

Marwo Lulu Farah
 Chair of SIRAG