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News from Somalia in Somali
Puntland Govt Has 30 Days to Recapture Las Anod, Says Parliament
Garowe Online (Garowe)
Legislators in Somalia's Puntland region have threatened to withdraw support from the regional administration if the city of Las Anod is not recaptured within a month.
Puntland lawmakers met in the capital Garowe on Sunday where discussion was mainly centered on the deteriorating situation in Las Anod, provincial capital of Sool.
Many MPs criticized the Puntland leadership over its mishandling of Las Anod and accused the government of mismanaging public funds.
The region's parliament voted in favor of holding a confidence vote on the government of President Mohamud "Adde" Muse if Las Anod is not under Puntland control within the next 30 days.
A written form of this decision will be handed over to the Office of President Muse on Monday, parliament sources said.
Armed forces from the separatist region of Somaliland advanced on Las Anod on October 15 after Puntland troops retreated east towards Garowe.
Somaliland forces were aided by local clan militias led by a disgruntled former Puntland government minister who switched loyalties.
More than 20,000 civilians have fled Las Anod since the Somaliland takeover, creating a humanitarian situation according to local and international aid agencies.
Residents in Puntland say that parliament's constitutional authority has been overshadowed by a strong presidency since the region's formation in 1998. Legislative decisions have been routinely ignored or overridden by presidential decrees.
The parliament, currently in its 19th session, is supposed to debate about amendments to the 1998 constitution, in light of political changes in Somalia including the establishment of a transitional federal government in Mogadishu.
President Muse promised MPs during his opening speech of parliament last week that "Las Anod will come back to our hands."
Many people fear the outbreak of civil war in north Somalia, the only peaceful and governed region of the country.
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Somaliweyn Media Center (SMC)