Fighting between Somaliland and Puntland forces erupts in Tukaraq town
Fierce fighting has started between forces loyal to Puntland state and the breakaway Somaliland in Sool region on Tuesday, Puntland minister confirmed.
The battle which erupted early Tuesday in Tukaraq town is reported to be ongoing.
Both Puntland and Somaliland have traded accusations of the attack.
Abdi Ali Hirsi Qarjab, Puntland minister for Information who confirmed the fighting said the forces of Somaliland have attacked bases of Puntland troops in the area.
” Somaliland forces attacked our troops near the frontline, they were repulsed and drove back,” said Qarjab.
Somaliland chief of Army, Noah Ismail Tani accused Puntland State of carrying out attack on the town saying the fighting is ongoing in Tukaraq town.” Puntland forces invaded Tukaraq town and the forces are still fighting in the area,” said Tani.
A statement by the office of the President which could not be independently verified accused the President of Somaliland of ordering his forces to attack Puntland territory for the second time.
“Consequently, on this day, 14 May 2018, the President of Somaliland has irresponsibly ordered his forces to launch an unprovoked attack on territory belonging to Puntland for a second time,” the statement reads in part. “All the while he continues to mislead the people of Somaliland b stating that he is fulfilling his previous electoral campaign pledges. This cynical policy of armed aggression represents clear of proof of the hostility of the regime in North Western Somalia.”
No casualties have been reported so far as the fighting is continuing.