Somaliland’s Livestock Minister Saeed Sulub Mohamed was stoned by angry people at the funeral of three people killed during political protests in Hargeisa on August 11.
A video of the minister being pelted with stones was circulating widely on social media. Mohamed’s bodyguards can also be seen in the footage firing live rounds to prevent people from attacking him.
It is unclear if anyone was seriously injured in the melee.
Following the burial, dozens of people wearing red headbands, a symbol of mourning, began throwing stones at the minister.
The minister was able to flee the crowd, but his car was reportedly damaged.
Somaliland Livestock Minister Saeed Sulub Mohamed accused the Waddani party’s leaders of being behind the party’s supporters’ attack.
According to the minister, the mourners initially welcomed him at the funeral. When the Waddani leaders arrived at the burial site, they ordered the youth to hurl rocks at him.
“We welcomed each other, but then the (Waddani) party leaders came and organised a rally, and ordered their supporters to attack me,” Minister Mohamed explained.
The minister went on to say that he had told his bodyguards not to shoot at civilians.
Mohamed blamed the fracas on Waddani party leader Abdirahman Mohamed Abdullahi ‘Irro,’ who antagonised an already distraught crowd.
The opposition parties blamed the government for the deaths of the protesters who were shot dead by the police when demonstrations turned violent. The protesters were demanding that presidential elections be held in November on Thursday.
According to a local police official, nearly 100 people were injured during the protests.
Muse Bihi Abdi, President of Somaliland, said in a Facebook post late Thursday evening that the majority of the injured were security forces “who were attacked with clubs, metal bars, and stones.”
The international community issued a joint statement expressing “deep concern” over reports of violence during protests in Somaliland’s capital.