UAE military Airbase deal not dead, Somaliland leader

The Agreement between Somaliland and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) has not collapsed, Somaliland leader confirmed.

Speaking at Burao University graduation ceremony on Sunday, Muse Abdi Bihi said the airport which is being constructed by UAE will remain opened to be used military operations as civilian purpose.

The leader in northern Somalia said the construction of the military airbase will continue as per the plan.

“The agreement we have with the military base is the same, we have not withdrawn from the government,” Muse said.
The development comes barely two days after Muse announced that the airport under construction as part of the UAE military base in Berbera will be converted for civilian use.

In 2017, the Somaliland parliament had the naval base deal between Somaliland and UAE following long discussion.

The contract to construct the airbase was won by Divers Marine Contracting LLC at the cost of $90 million.

The UAE began construction of the base in 2017 in the port city of Berbera. Under the terms of the deal, the UAE was to have a presence there for 30 years.

The government of the United Arab Emirates has not commented on the new development by Somaliland authorities.