Somalia has severed its diplomatic ties with neighboring Kenya citing frequent violation of Mogadishu’s sovereignty, Somalia’s information minister said on Monday evening.
Osman Dubbe, Somalia’s information minister, said his country will immediately withdraw its diplomats from Kenya and ordered Kenyan diplomats to leave Mogadishu within seven days.
“The Somali government, on the basis of its sovereignty, international law and order, and fulfilling its constitutional duty to safeguard the unity, sovereignty and stability of the country, has decided to sever diplomatic relations with the Government of Kenya,” Dubbe said in a speech broadcast live on Somali state television.
The minister said the move was taken in response to the ongoing political aggression by the Kenyan government against Somalia’s independence.
Nairobi has yet to react to Mogadishu’s move.
The drastic decision came hours after Nairobi hosted President of the self-declared region of Somaliland Musa Bihi Abdi in Nairobi for bilateral talks aimed at forging closer ties.
The latest diplomatic spat between Somalia and Kenya began on Nov. 29 when Somalia expelled Kenya’s ambassador and recalled its own envoy from Nairobi.
Kenya’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs then said in a statement that Kenya respects and upholds the cardinal international principles of self-determination, sovereignty, political independence, and territorial integrity of all countries, and in particular those in Africa.
Somaliland seceded from Somalia in May 1991. However, the Somali government insists that Somaliland is part of its territory.