Search

Breakaway Somaliland gets Tower Hamlets ‘recognition’ in bid for independence

PUBLISHED: 10:49 19 November 2015 | UPDATED: 17:25 19 November 2015

Somaliland supporters after Tower Hamlets 'recognition' vote

Somaliland supporters after Tower Hamlets 'recognition' vote

Archant

Campaigners pressing for Britain to formally accept breakaway Somaliland as an independent state in the Horn of Africa have won “recognition” from a local authority in London’s East End.

They packed Tower Hamlets council meeting last night, waving nationalist flags and banners from the public gallery, as members voted overwhelmingly to support them.

Waiving Somaliland flag in town hall public galleryWaiving Somaliland flag in town hall public gallery

The vote in this deprived borough with one of Britain’s fastest-growing Somali communities abroad was to “show this council has listened to the Somaliland people and recognise them as part of our community”.

Nationals filled the public gallery as the aspiring regime’s Minister of Minerals gave an impassioned address to the council chamber.

“We came here because this is history in the making,” Hussain Dualuh later told the East London Advertiser.

“We as British Somaliland were given our independence in 1960, then got involved with Italian Somalia when it became independent to unite all the Somali-speaking people on our own accord.

Mayor John Biggs with Somaliland 'Minister for Minerals' Hussain DualuhMayor John Biggs with Somaliland 'Minister for Minerals' Hussain Dualuh

“But we’ve had nothing but grief out of that union, so we broke away in 1990. It wasn’t a legal union.”

The connection with Tower Hamlets is the East End’s Somali community that dates back to the 19th century when they worked in the London Docks.

“The council recognising our aspirations helps get a little closer to Westminster for Britain’s support,” Mr Dualuh added.

“They say recognition has to come from the African Union and they tell us we cannot tamper with the old Colonial borders—but we’re repairing those former borders.”

Cllr  Amina Ali (left) joins Somaliland campaigners for a 'selfie' after Tower Hamlets 'recognition' voteCllr Amina Ali (left) joins Somaliland campaigners for a 'selfie' after Tower Hamlets 'recognition' vote

Tower Hamlets is the third UK local authority supporting the campaign for recognition.

Both the Labour administration and Independent opposition councillors backed a resolution claiming a democratic Somaliland “presents a strong case for recognition under international law, meeting the criteria for statehood”.

They compared it to Bangladesh which broke away from Pakistan in 1971—its biggest Bangladeshi community abroad being in Tower Hamlets.

But there was caution from Tory Opposition which abstained, stating any move towards internationally-recognised independence had to come through the African Union.

Latest East London News Stories

48 minutes ago

A 22-year-old man has been jailed after police busted into his flat on the Isle of Dogs and discovered firearms and a room full of cannabis growing in his bedroom.

09:16

Police are starting a fresh investigation into Tower Hamlets voting fraud after coming under fire earlier this year at the London Assembly.

This relentlessly fascinating account of the sordid schemes of Joseph Merceron, a 19th century magistrate of Bethnal Green, charts the rise, fall and return of a man who shamelessly stole from the East End’s poorest.

Police are seeking the driver of a silver or grey BMW 1-series after a man was killed in Mansell Street last night.

Yesterday, 18:29

More police action is needed to curb yob behaviour by night-time revellers in Tower Hamlets that’s the stark message to City Hall’s new ‘night czar’ Amy Lamé and to Tower Hamlets Mayor John Biggs.

Yesterday, 13:56

Two people have been cut free from their cars in a seven-vehicle crash on the A13.

Mon, 16:27

Old soldier Charles Pope who won the Victoria Cross for valour has finally been commemorated in the neighbourhood where he grew up — 100 years after his death.

Mon, 13:36

A murder investigation has been started in east London after a double stabbing in which a man died after being discovered by police in a flat in Bow Common.

Newsletter Sign Up

Sign up to receive our regular email newsletter

Most read news

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Competitions

Having a brand new kitchen is something that lots of people want but can only dream of. Sadly keeping up to date and making our living spaces as nice as they can be is a costly and incredibly stressful business. Even a fresh coat of paint makes all the difference but isn’t easy or quick.

Who wouldn’t love the chance to go on a shopping spree. Imagine being able to walk into a shop and choose whatever your heart desires without having to worry about how much it costs.

Digital Edition

cover

Enjoy the
Docklands and East London Advertiser
e-edition today

Subscribe

Education and Training

cover

Read the
Education and Training
e-edition today

Read Now