EDITORIAL: Resolve diplomatic row
Monday, May 27, 2019 19:32
The ongoing spat between Somalia and Kenya is not healthy for the two neighbours. Both should seek to resolve their differences diplomatically as they await the outcome of the border dispute that Somalia has filed against Kenya.
Somalia and Kenya require each other, especially in the face of threats posed by terrorism and counterfeits.
Frosty relations between the two nations augur badly for peace in their restive common border region as well as for the good of the Horn of Africa.
Grippled by insecurity and lawlessness since the 1990s, Somalia ought to be more keen to keep warm relations with neighbours, which Kenya sees as essential to its efforts to stabilise the country ravaged by years of civil war and terrorism.
Kenya also requires goodwill from Somalia in its quest to stop the potential spillovers of Islamist violence.
It is, without a doubt, self-evident that both nations require each other for peace to prevail.
Somalia has criticised Kenya for denying entry to two Somalia lawmakers and a minister. In turn, Somalia has directed its public officials to keep off Kenya.
The uneasy relationship between the two nations erupted in the open in February when Nairobi recalled its ambassador to Somalia after the Mogadishu government’s decision to auction oil and gas exploration blocks in the Indian Ocean that are at the centre of a maritime territorial dispute.
The International Court of Justice (ICJ) in The Hague is still seized of the filed by Somalia in 2014 after negotiations over the 100,000 sq. km stretch of sea floor broke down.
The contested maritime sea floor is believed to host oil and gas deposits. The warring parties should let the court settle the matter and solve any emerging differences through the available diplomatic channels and not saber-rattling.