Las Anod water supply facility has been destroyed by Somaliland’s soldiers who fled the area on Saturday. The water plant was part of a critical civilian infrastructure of Las Anod. Its destruction could be considered a war crime.
Gooja’adde, Las Anod, Sool, SOMALIA. By Yahya:
SSC-Khaatumo forces on Saturday morning captured the Gooja’adde military base, where the Somaliland troops were stationed. The outpost has been a crucial strategic base for Somaliland forces from where they waged a brutal war on Las Anod since February. Within the Gooja’adde vicinity also lies an essential water plant, which supplied water to Las Anod.
Somaliland’s army captured the water plant in March, interrupting the supply. Although the soldiers claimed the facility remains unharmed, the reality is disturbing, however unsurprising. Numerous photos emerged on social media, displaying the facility utterly destroyed.
Moreover, the Somaliland forces left a hostile message spray-painted on one of the walls. It states, “Leave SNM alone.” SNM refers to the Somali National Movement, a guerilla group that opposed the Siad Barre regime in the 1980s and 1990s. The organisation has been allegedly responsible for numerous killings in the Sool, Sanaag, and Ayn regions during the 90s and early 2000s.
Targeting civilian infrastructure
The demolition of this water plant near Gooja’adde is one of many suspected war crimes that Somaliland’s army inflicted on Las Anod civilians during the past seven months. Somaliland’s frequent shelling killed hundreds of people and displaced at least 200,000. It frequently targeted the city’s civilian objects, such as Las Anod’s hospitals. The waves of shelling also killed several prominent figures.
On 16 August, the Somaliland army’s bombardment killed a prominent Somali poet, Jama Kediye. Mr Kediye became famous for creating the ‘Saar’ rhythmic poetry form. Born in Las Anod, he became a respected poet throughout the Horn of Africa nation and one of the few poets who composed and performed this type of art.
The tragic incident came only days after Somaliland killed another prominent elder. Indiscriminate shelling hit a residence adjacent to Faayow Hospital and a small tea shop. The bombardment claimed the life of a revered 85-year-old elder, Jama Digale.