Press Statement: Date: 8/09/2021
Human Rights Centre is publishing its second quarterly report for the months of May-August 2021. The report emphasizes human rights abuses occurred for the past 4 months in Somaliland. These violations comprise of police brutality, arbitrary detentions, issues related to freedom of expression and gender-based violence. Gender-based violence cases has seen an increasing numbers of violations.
Of cases related to police brutality, a police officer from Qudhac[ dheer police station shot a victim seven times in his legs on April 19, 2021. The victim is Abdiassis Abdillahi who lives in the city of Hargeisa. The police officer involved in the case was arrested for a month before being released. Abdiassis is still in the hospital, as a result of multiple injuries and damage done to his body.
Article 24(2) of the Somaliland constitution states “Every person shall have the right to the security of his person. Physical punishment and any other injury to the person are prohibited.”
Arbitrary detention of political opposition leaders has also seen an increasing trend. Saleeban Cawaale Good is the UCID Deputy National Information Secretary. He was arrested on August 28, 2021 without warrant and held without trial for holding a press conference in which he criticized the governor of Awdal region. The arbitrary arrest of Saleeban Cawaale Good is against Somaliland constitution, as mentioned in article 25(1), in particular states that “No person shall be deprived of his liberty except in accordance with the law.” On the other hand, article 32(1) grants citizens the right to express opinions orally, visually, artistically or any methods they so choose.
Human Rights Center is concerned with the reoccurring violations and urges for Somaliland government to accept these conditions:
- Find better methods to implement and enforce laws and reform the police force
- Hold the police accountable for infractions occurred on the job
- Release Saleeban Cawaale Good without conditions.
- Find better laws that are specific to gender and until parliament can find a better law, to enforce the 2018 Act.
Yaasmiin Omar H. Mohamoud
Chairperson of the Human Rights Center