The Federal Government of Somalia in Mogadishu has not cut their ties to Qatar, after the treat of cutting their aid. As even the meeting in Saudi Arabia haven’t gone well, and the Qatar Foreign Diplomat met with Hassan Ali Khaire yesterday. This proves that still, the Federal Republic of Somalia plans to stay neutral on the matter, even as Somaliland are embargoing and closing their borders for Qatar. This is the current report today!
Harun Maruf Statement today:
“Saudi Arabia knows it has no leverage on Somalia, pledges made to Somalia weren’t met, diplomatic relations not strong, source tells me” (…) “UAE does have leverage on Somalia – it’s training military and maritime forces in Mogadishu and Puntland, 1000s Somalis work in UAE” (…) “UAE may not rush to punish Somalia for not cutting ties with Qatar: Somali parliament will soon open deliberations on UAE interests in port and bases” (Harun Maruf, 12.06.2017).
The Middle East Monitor is spelling out that the Somali Government still doesn’t care for the blackmailing the Mogadishu representatives, as the KSA are trying to pay them to cut ties with Qatar. They are not giving-up and wanting them to give in, like Yemen, Bahrain, United Arab Emirates, Maldives, Djibouti, Tchad and Comoros, who has all cut ties with Qatar. They we’re expecting the same from Somalia, but apparently this is not at the interest of the FSG.
“Somali President, Mohammed Abdullah Farmajo, has been offered $80 million in exchange for his agreement to sever diplomatic relations with the State of Qatar, the New Khalij news outlet reported a prominent journalist has revealed. “After two hours of enticement, Farmajo rejected the tempting offer,” journalist Jaber Al-Harimi said” (…) “The sources confirmed that Saudi Arabia threatened to withdraw financial aid to the Somali government unless Somalia change its neutral stand in which it has called for an end to the political dispute between Qatar and the other Arab nations through dialogue via Islamic organisations like the Arab League and the Organisation of Islamic Conference (OIC). The sources added that “ministers of the Somali government returned from Saudi Arabia after meetings with their counterpart were unexpectedly postponed.” It is understood that the rulers of the UAE, with the knowledge of Saudi Arabia, have already sought to persuade Farmajo, who won the presidency despite opposition from the UAE, to change his position” (Middle East Monitor, 2017).
Clearly, the Saudi Arabian diplomat’s have used their preservation to sway the Somali of changing their ways. As it is even reported not as earlier before that President Farmaajo said no to $50m, but $80m. Which is a hefty sum, and could make a big difference. Still it is envelope politics and blackmailing. Not of discussions of mere accords or even guidelines of just behavior, but more of trying to pay them to drop their agreements and deals with Qatar.
So it is not like the KSA does this with tact or honesty, they are more trying to use their petrodollars to silence Mogadishu and their representatives. They are clearly trying to cut of more airspace and one of few neutral partners, who hasn’t taken a direct side. That is why the KSA are working so hard and even offering more and more aid. Not because the KSA cares about Somali life or the Federation, more use it as tool to make more of the airspace and the embargo more effective. We can easily see this and see the reason for the battle of loyalty from Mogadishu, but blackmailing shouldn’t be the way. The KSA should know this, but apparently they don’t. Peace.
Middle East Monitor – ‘Somalia turns down $80m to cut ties with Qatar’ (12.06.2017) link: https://www.middleeastmonitor.com/20170612-somalia-turns-down-80m-to-cut-ties-with-qatar/