Somalia cuts diplomatic ties with Kenya: minister
Published: Dec 15, 2020 05:03 PM
Somalia has cut ties with its neighbor Kenya, accusing it of political interference, Somalia's information minister said Tuesday at around 1:40 am Mogadishu time on state-run SNTV, escalating a tiff from last month when Somalia recalled its ambassador from Nairobi.

"Somalia calls back all its diplomats from Kenya and ­orders Kenyan diplomats to leave Somalia within seven days," Somalia's Information Minister Osman Dube told the state news agency.

Last month, Somalia expelled Kenya's ambassador and recalled its own envoy from Nairobi after alleging that its neighbor was interfering in the electoral process in Jubbaland, one of Somalia's five semi­autonomous states.

Dube said in a statement that Nairobi was meddling in Somalia's politics but did not give specific ­details of the alleged interference.

"This is an answer to the constant political violation and Kenya's open interference in Somalia's independence," he said.

Kenya did not immediately comment on the latest dispute with Somalia.

The latest diplomatic row between the East African neighbors follows tensions in February 2019 when Kenya recalled its ambassador after Mogadishu decided to auction oil and gas exploration blocks at the center of their maritime rights dispute.

The two countries restored ties in November last year.

Kenya has supported the ­Somali government in other areas and contributes troops to an African Union-led force there fighting Al Qaeda-linked militants.