Saturday, December 07, 2002

Somaliland's President comes under attack in Las Anod-
HARGEISA, DEC 7, 2002--At least four people died and an unknown number
wounded when forces loyal to Puntland administration made a surprise attack
on Somaliland President Dahir Riyale Kahin who arrived in Las Anod earlier today.

In a telephone call to Hargeisa, Newsowl learned from official sources
that the President and his delegation came under attack from Puntland forces
moments after their arrival in Las Anod.

The sources confirmed the death of the commander of the Puntland forces and
other four people.

In a bid aimed at avoiding further loss of life and destruction of the town,
Mr. Kahin immediately retreated to the nearby village of Caynabo and ordered
a ceasefire.

Las Anod is the main town of Sool region which along with Sanag are claimed
by the Puntland administration for being part of their autonomous enclave. However,
historically both regions were part of the British Somaliland Protectorate before the
country gained independence on June 26, 1960.

On July 1, 1960, the Somali Republic was born out of a merger between Somaliland
and Italian Somalia. After the collapse of Siyad Barre's dicatorial regime 1991,
Somaliland people proclaimed the restoration of their pre-unification sovereignty and
declared Somaliland as an independent and separate state from Somalia. Somaliland
had ever since enjoyed peace and stability and had functional elected parliamentary

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