Hargeysa(Mogadishu24)-The breakaway republic of Somaliland has admitted defeat after facing heavy casualties in a fierce battle with SSC-Khatumo forces in Goja’ade Army Base near Las’anod town in Sool region on Friday.

After the fierce battle, the SSC-Khatumo forces have seized control of Goja’ade, Somaliland’s strategically important military base in the region, and claimed to have killed several Somaliland soldiers, as well as capturing 165 others.

The President of Somaliland President Musa Bihi Abdi ddressed the security issues in the region on Saturday, expressing deep sorrow over the defeat and casualties inflicted on the Somaliland Army.

“I extend my condolences to the families of the soldiers we lost in yesterday’s fight in Las’Anod. This is the first battle where our forces have suffered such a huge defeat,” President Bihi conceded.

He stated that the defeat would not undermine the nation’s sovereignty and declared to seek revenge against the SSC-Khatumo Forces.

“We sustained a huge defeat yesterday, but I strongly believe that our national sovereignty remains intact and would not be affected by the loss. We shall overcome from this and seek revenge against our enemies,” he declared.

The President further pointed out the formation of a committee comprising of members of parliament, ministers and leaders of political parties, to analyse the losses during the battle and determine the necessary measures to prevent any further escalation of the situation.

Feisal Ali Warabe, the leader of the UCID opposition party, called for unity and support for the Somaliland forces in their fight in Las’Anod.

“This is the right time for us to unite and show our solidarity, extending support to our brave forces who are at the forefront of the defence of our nation,” stated Mr. Feisal, UCID party leader.

Abdullahi Bidhaan, Member of Parliament representing Las’Anod in the Federal Parliament, commended the SSC forces for their commitment to the unity of the Somali people.

“The defeat of Somaliland forces, which have opposed the unity of the Somali people, is a great achievement for the unity of the Somali people. I congratulate the SSC forces who, for a long time, have fought for the unity and brotherhood of the Somali people,” said Mp Bidhaan.

The conflicts in Las’Anod began on February 6th, 2023, as a result of public protests against increased extrajudicial killings by the Somaliland Administration, targeting key public figures including religious leaders, elders, and intellectuals.

The conflicts in Las Anod have led to an estimated death toll of at least 300 people and the displacement of 154,000 to 203,000 civilians from their homes. This situation has sparked international outrage and repeated calls for an immediate resolution.

Despite calls from the UN Human Rights Committee and the International Community for peaceful dialogue and investigations into the indiscriminate attacks in Las’anod town, these calls have gone unanswered.

In the mountainous areas of Ga’an-Libah, anti-government forces have emerged, claiming to fight for the rights of the Somaliland people and voicing opposition to decisions made by senators and the electoral commission that extended President Muse Bihi Abdi’s term.

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