Kenya-Somalia- Maritime- Dispute

Kenya will not cede territory to Somalia - Official

APA-Nairobi(Kenya)

Kenya’s Cabinet Secretary for Foreign Affairs, Monicah Juma on Thursday evening vowed that her country will not cede an inch of her territory in an ongoing maritime territory row with Somalia.

The Cabinet Secretary said that Kenya is committed to peaceful resolution of the dispute, adding that the country is open to engagement with neighboring Somalia, which she claimed is violating Kenya’s maritime zones.

“Today, the Cabinet met and deliberated on this matter, which is of utmost national interest as it touches on sanctity of boundaries and sovereignty of our country,” said Ms. Juma while addressing the media.

Ms. Juma maintained that Somalia is insincere over Sunday’s denial that it has no intention of auctioning oil and gas blocks to which Kenya lays claim.

Ms. Juma disclosed that on February last year during the Somalia Oil and Gas Conference in London, its Ministry of Petroleum and Mineral Resources revealed her plan to offer for auction oil blocks, some of which lie within Kenya’s territory.

Currently, the dispute is before the International Court of Justice.

Ms. Juma noted that action of offering the oil blocks by Somalia undermines the principle of good faith and defeats the purpose of waiting for the court to make the final determination.

She further added that during the Africa Oil week in Cape Town, South Africa, last November, Somalia announced that it was in the process of mapping its offshore oil blocks and was preparing to offer the blocks for auction.

“Somalia anticipates that the signing of the final Production Sharing Agreement by the winning bidder will be on 9th December, 2019 with an effective date of 1st January, 2020,” she pointed out.

According to Ms. Juma, Kenya stands to lose 26 percent (≈51,105km2) of Kenya’s EEZ and 85 percent (≈95,320km2) of the continental shelf beyond the 200 nautical miles (EEZ) limit.

Nairobi has demanded that Somalia withdraws the use of illegal maps depicting Kenya’s territory as constituting part of Somalia’s maritime territory and demanded a formal apology from her neighbor for violating Kenya’s territory.

Last weekend, Kenya expelled Somalia’s ambassador to Nairobi and recalled its own diplomat from Mogadishu, over the dispute.


JK/as/APA

React to this article