US reprimands Somaliland for ‘gagging’ press freedom

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The United States scolded Somaliland for heightened crackdown on press freedom, days after the BBC was banned from operating inside the quayside state.

“#Somaliland can and should be a stronger partner to the U.S., which is why I proposed a bill examining ways to do that,” Jim Risch, ranking member of US Senate Foreign Relations Committee tweeted on Wednesday.

“But, it’s unacceptable for it to continue undermining #pressfreedom, esp. as it seeks to distinguish itself from the region on its democratic record.”

In response to the comments, Somaliland opposition MP Mohamed Abib said region’s partners were “disappointed by the government’s undemocratic actions” and that they would “stand against government’s moves that undermine #freepress and freedom of speech.”

On Tuesday, Somaliland Minister of Information Saleban Ali Kore said authorities had banned BBC news broadcasts in the region, citing bias and violations against the region’s sovereignty.

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