Assassination of peacebuilding partner deeply saddens organization; reminds of obstacles to peace
June 23, 2008
Interpeace and its Somali partners (the Center for Research and Dialogue – CRD, the Puntland Development Research Center – PDRC, and the Academy for Peace and Development – APD) are deeply saddened by the assassination of Engineer Mohamed Hassan Kulmiye, Director of CRD’s satellite office in Beletweyne, Somalia. We extend our deepest sympathy and condolences to Engineer Kulmiye’s family, friends and colleagues and share with them in their grief.
Engineer Kulmiye has played a vital role and worked tirelessly for peace in the Hiraan region and Somalia as a whole. He effectively started up CRD’s peacebuilding operations in the central Somali region of Hiraan, establishing CRD’s first satellite office in Beletweyne. Over the last two years, Engineer Kulmiye and the CRD team were able to engage the different key actors and community leaders of the Hiraan and central regions and unify them towards peace. The Peace Caravan CRD led throughout the Hiiraan Region last year, the Mudug clans peace agreement and the Mahas and Elbur social successful reconciliation interventions were a wonderful demonstration of both his commitment to peace and the impact his efforts had.
Interpeace will not be deterred by this cowardly act. We will continue to support the efforts of the Somali people -backed by the goodwill of the international community -to secure peace, stability and rule of law in their country. Interpeace remains absolutely committed to support our Somali colleagues in bringing long-lasting peace to the Somali region through our Somali peacebuilding programmes and the support to our three partners on the ground. This work is the legacy of Engineer Kulmiye, the late Abdulkadir Yahya and other fallen colleagues and friends whose commitment to peace cannot be derailed by the mindless, despicable acts of the cowards that hide behind the gun. The long-term commitment Interpeace and our partners have to the Somali people can only be possible through the courage, tenacity and hope that resides in each and every Somali who truly believes in peace. This is how we will remember our brother, Engineer Mohamed Hassan Kulmiye.
The tragic deaths of Engineer Kulmiye and other heroes of peace in the Somali region are solemn testaments to the extraordinary struggle of the Somali peace activists, the civil society, the media and the entire community that work on the front-lines of peace. They are courageously walking the path towards a peaceful settlement and the start of real recovery for the Somali people. The only way forward for the Somali people and international community is to GIVE PEACE A CHANCE. In honor of Engineer Kulmiye and other fallen peacebuilders, we must redouble our efforts to ensure that such a PEACE is realized.