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South Western State of Somalia (Somalia)

Self-proclaimed unrecognized republic

Last modified: 2015-02-01 by bruce berry
Keywords: south-west somalia | somalia |
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image by Zoltan Horvath, 11 March 2014

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South-West Somalia  (Koonfur-Galbeed Soomaaliya) was an autonomous self-proclaimed state in Somalia founded by Hasan Muhammas Nur Shatigadad, leader of the Rahanweyn Resistance Army (RRA) on 01 April 2002.

Following the signing of the Jubba Agreement between officials of the South Western State of Somalia, Jubaland and the federal Somali government whereby it was agreed that an autonomous state could be established under the Provisional Federal Constitution, delegates  representing the Bay, Bakool and Lower Shabelle regions met in the capital Baidoa on 27 March 2014 and elected Mohamed Haji Abdinur as president of the Southwestern State of Somalia.
Bruce Berry, 16 March 2014

South-Western State of Somalia (2014 -  )

The Somali Gazette reports that South Western State of Somalia has been proclaimed again and the flag has changed.    The new flag comprises three equal horizontal stripes.  The top stripe is UN blue with a white 5 pointed star in the centre. The middle stripe is plain red followed by a green stripe at the bottom containing 6 white five pointed stars arranged in a circle.
Lee Herold, 11 March 2014

image by Jaume Ollé, 27 October 2014

There is also a vertical variant.
Jaume Ollé, 27 October 2014

South-West Somalia (2002 - 2014)

Image by Jaume Ollé, 07 Sept 2014

The first flag of South West Somalia comprised three equal horizontal stripes of light blue, red and green.  In the canton are six white five-pointed stars in a circle.  The colours seem to based on those of the Rahanweyn Resistence Army, but which are arranged diagonally and with a single star in canton.
Jaume Ollé, 07 Sept 2014

 A new Somali state has been declared this Sunday, newspapers reported.  It will be called "South-West Somalia" and the capital is Baidoa. It hasn't been clarified yet if this is an independent state like Somaliland or just autonomous one, like Puntland.
J.J.Andersson, 31 Mar 2002

More info on the State of Southwest Somalia:
"SOMALIA: RRA sets up autonomous region
NAIROBI, 01 April (IRIN) - The Rahanweyn Resistance Army (RRA), which controls the Bay and Bakol regions, southwestern Somalia, has set up a new regional administration, an RRA senior official told IRIN on Monday.

The new autonomous region would be known as the State of Southwestern Somalia, Muhammad Ali Adan Qalinle, the governor of Baidoa, said.

This is the third regional administration to be set up in Somalia, following the establishment of Somaliland (northwestern Somalia) and Puntland (in the northeast).

The decision was reached at a meeting of the RRA central committee and over 70 elders from the Digil and Mirifle clans. The meeting, which had been in session in Baidoa, the capital of Bay Region, 240 km southwest of Mogadishu, since 22 March, elected Colonel Hasan Muhammad Nur Shatigadud, the chairman of the RRA, as president on Sunday. "He was inaugurated in Baidoa today, and will serve an initial four year term," Qalinle told IRIN on Monday. Baidoa will be the capital of the new state.

Shatigadud was a colonel in the notorious secret police, the National Security Service (NSS) of the former dictator Muhammad Siyad Barre, Somali sources told IRIN on Monday. A member of the Harin sub-clan of the main Rahanweyn clan, he set up the RRA in 1995 to resist the occupation of the area by the late faction leader, General Muhammad Farah Aydid, whose forces invaded the Bay and Bakol regions the same year.

Shatigadud had no opponents and was elected "by acclamation" by the meeting. He will be assisted by two vice-presidents, and will appoint 19 cabinet ministers and 19 deputy ministers, said Qalinle. Qalinle said that the new president would name his cabinet before the reconciliation talks due to be convened in the Kenyan capital, Nairobi, this month.

The move to establish the autonomous region now is seen by Somali observers as a way for the RRA "to come to the talks as an established administration as opposed to a faction". It may also sound the death knell of the Somali Reconciliation and Restoration Council (SRRC) said one observer. The SRRC is grouping of southern factions opposed to the Transitional National Government.

"The RRA controls the base from which the SRRC operates, and many of its members are factions in name only, controlling little or no territory," he said. Qalinle, however, dismissed this suggestion, saying: "Yes, we will go to Nairobi as the autonomous Southwestern State of Somalia, but we will still be under the SRRC umbrella." He added that the SRRC would be represented in the cabinet of the new regional administration.

The move to set up the administration was very popular with ordinary people, who had long agitated for the RRA to transform itself into a functioning administration, a local source in Baidoa told IRIN. However, according to this source, the idea that the new president might appoint some members of the SRRC to his cabinet was not being well received. "Any attempt to bring non-Digil and Mirifle SRRC members into the administration will not be popular and will probably stir up divisions," he said.
Copyright (c) UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs  2002"

Factions Declare Somalia Government Mon Apr 1,10:42 AM ET By OSMAN HASSAN, Associated Press Writer MOGADISHU, Somalia (AP) -
An Ethiopian-backed coalition of militia leaders on Monday established a fourth breakaway, regional government in Somalia, rejecting the transitional central government in the capital, Mogadishu. The formation of the Southwestern Regional Government further marks the disintegration of Somalia, where breakaway regional governments have already been established in the northern Somaliland and Puntland regions. The Somali Reconciliation and Restoration Council declared the formation of the new regional government, based in Baidoa, as an alternative to the 18-month old Transitional National Government in Mogadishu. The council is made up of leaders left out of the peace conference that established the transitional government, including the Baidoa-based Rahanwein Resistance Army. The Rahanwein army's leader Col. Hassan Mohamed Nur Shargudud was declared the regional government's president on Monday. Somalia has been without a strong central government since the fall of dictator Mohamed Siad Barre in 1991, when feuding faction leaders turned against each other, creating chaos in Somalia Business and clan leaders called a conference in neighboring Djibouti in August 2000 to form a new central government, but so far the new president has been unable to assert itself outside of the capital. Ethiopian officials have also accused the transitional government of having ties to Islamic fundamentalists and have backed the armed faction leaders who make up the reconciliation council and the new southwestern government.
Source: this website.
Mikhail Revnivtsev, 10 Apr 2002


A flag of Maayland / Southern Somali Union is shown at which is a similar design we shown above.
Olivier Touzeau, 02 Aug 2008