Puntland is a successor state of Somalia. It is bordered by Somaliland, Ethiopia and a lawless zone in the South. It has been plagued with problems since Doomsday. The most noticeable is the Somali pirates that operate close to the country's coast.
- 1 History
- 2 Government
- 3 Religion
- 4 Military
- 5 Media
- 6 Sport
- 7 Travel
- 8 Economy
- 9 Education
- 10 Foreign Relations
The Puntland region of Somalia had always been very independent and rebels in the region had been causing trouble to the Somali government for decades, while they never sought to become an independent nation like Somaliland they wanted to have some form of self governance.
Like the rest of Africa Somalia wasn't hit on doomsday but like many African countries it lost it's suplies from the USA and the Somali government started to fall apart.
Establishment of Puntland (1983-1985)
The Isimada (Council of Eldars) in the region used there relationship with the general populace to help restore order to the Puntland area as soon as it became obvious that the Somali government would be unable to deal with the Islamic Courts Union in the south or the various tribes and militia that were fighting for control. Although unprepared for the responsibility of command the Isimada tried there best to form some kind of government, between 1984 and 1985 the flood of refuges trying to get to Somaliland was at its highest and the Isimada were struggling to control the country. Thankfully salvation soon arrived in the form of ex-Somali military units led by a unit of fifteen US officers who had been sent to help train up the Somali army. When these officers arrived in 1985 they were able to help the Isimada to stabilize the region. With there help the Isimada were able to stop the flow of refugees and start to form a stable democracy.
The Somali Civil War (1985-1990)
Compared with some of the Somali successor states Puntland had very limited involvement in the Civil War only being directly involved in 5 of the wars 26 years. However the 5 years in which Puntland had a direct involvement in were some of the bloodiest and most brutal, Puntland had to fight off troops from the Somali tribes as well as forces from the republic of Ogadania. It also tried to retake some of its land from Somaliland which resulted in several small skirmishes between the two nations. However, Puntland was able to isolate itself later in the Civil War and avoided the massive chaos that accompanied the later invasion of some of the lawless by Ethiopian rogue elements. Puntland would later be home to the Ethiopian/Eritrean peacekeeping force in the mid 2000's.
The Pirate Problem (1990-1994)
At the end of the civil war the largest problem facing the new government was the Somali pirates that were operating of the coast of Puntland and had bases on the northern coast of Puntland. With barely any ships the government was limited to dealing with the bases on land until in 1990 a Puntland naval architect came up with an idea, as it had been home to most of Somalia's docks and ports nearly ten merchant ships remained in Puntland's harbours and they were chosen to be converted into warships. These ships were the country's major investment project for two years as the ships were rebuilt to combat ready standards.
After there rebuilding the ships formed the base of a Puntland battle group that was tasked to crack down on piracy, with the help of army and air force units Puntlands government had managed to crack down on piracy in the waters surrounding Puntland and had evicted the pirates from the country.
Contact With The World (1994-1995)
Puntlands government had been aware of the existence of nearby Somaliland since the early 90's and in 1994 started to trade with both Somaliland and the Ethiopian government. Slowly Puntland grew into a region of great importance, it had some of the largest navies in the region and escorted shipping in the gulf of Somalia, the first contact with regions outside of Africa came when a nuclear submarine entered the gulf, fearing it to be armed the Puntland navy retreated into its harbours and waited. When the submarines captain broadcast his intent over the radio the vessel was escorted into harbour by the most powerful ships in the navy.
When the submarine was docked the captain of the vessel revealed that the submarine in question was the Portuguese vessel Albacora. The captain gave them news of other survivor states all over the world and of the survival of some form of US government in Australia. This caused a problem with ten of the 15 American officers who said that Puntland should be an associated state of the ANZC, the idea was dismissed by the Isimada who said that Somali wouldn't be in the mess that it was now in if they had staid neutral which led to an attempted revolution by five of the Americans and the pro-America factions in Puntland. The revolution was put down quickly and the five Americans were imprisoned and despite protests from the ANZC remained in the country when the Albacora left although the other five pro-ANZC officers left on the sub.
Transition to Democracy (1995-2004)
Although the 1990 constitution of Puntland stated that it was a democracy where all members of parliament and the president were elected the actual power still lay in the hands of the elders. Many Puntlanders were becoming increasingly fed up with this and to prevent a revolution the elders agreed to hand over power to a democratically elected government. Setting up for elections was a long and complicated process not least due to the fact that the elders were unwilling to surrender power to the general populace but eventually in 2004 the country held its first free and fair elections.
Return Of The Pirate Menace (2004-Ongoing
The biggest problem now facing the government in Puntland is the return of Somali pirates, mostly from the border regions of Puntland and some of old Somalia the pirates are a menace to any shipping in the Gulf Of Somalia. The Puntland navy is now so overstretched that the government has asked for countries that wish to use the Gulf provide there own escort as it is becoming impractical for the Puntland navy (Even with the help of the Eritrean and Somaliland navies) to patrol the area. Despite these problems the government is beginning to modernize Puntland and improve the countries infrastructure.
Puntland is a stable single party democracy. The president and MP's are elected by the populace and the president then appoints the prime minister. The majority of MP's in the Puntland Parliament are from the old Isimada which has led to accusations of vote fixing by the more liberal aspects of Puntland's citizenry.
Islam is the only major religion in Puntland with almost everyone following it. However it is not a strict Islamic country and Islamic law and some other traditions are largely disregarded.
Puntland's army is made up of a mix of ex-Somali army forces and a few US army units. It is led by a group of five ex-US army officers (The remainder of the fifteen that were originally assigned to train the Somali army) and has no armoured or mechanized forces. It is however armed with good quality equipment and has a few helicopters, because of its US army training and high quality equipment the Puntland army is well prepared to deal with the pirates and gangs that make up the majority of its opposition.
Puntland has practically no air to speak of, its combat aircraft are limited to ten F-5 fighters supplied by the US prior to Doomsday, fifteen helicopters and two modified class two airships the PAS Somali and the PAS Punt.
While Puntland's army and Air Force aren't that powerful and merely exist to protect the country from invasion and rogue militia groups the navy is one of the three most powerful in the Gulf of Somalia and is mainly rivaled by the Somaliland Navy and the Eritrean Navy in the red sea. Its flagship is the armed merchant ship PNS Abdisamad that had once been the MV Iron Star (A container ship). The majority of the ships are armed with a variety of weapons from heavy machine guns to converted artillery pieces, Puntlands navy consists of both the converted merchant ships and some ships of the Somali navy. In total Puntland's navy operates:
- Seven Armed Merchant Ships.
- Six OSA-II Missile Boats
- Four Torpedo boats
- Several patrol boats
The navy is tasked with controlling the Gulf of Somalia and conducts patrols with the Eritrean and Somaliland navies to protect shipping in the Gulf from pirates.--->
Media isn't state regulated in Puntland and there is a private TV station that operates in addition to two state radio channels and three private newspapers. The state radio stations broadcast news and sporting events while the private TV station broadcasts TV shows produced locally as well as old US shows. The three newspapers each try to appeal to a different section of the populace, The Daily Punt & Sunday Punt focuses on the lower classes and is known for its right wing pro Islamic line. The African News is a joint newspaper produced by several countries including Ethiopia, Eritrea, Puntland and South Sudan. It is known for its moderate left wing views and is targeted at the middle class. The African Star is a upper class newspaper produced in Puntland and is known for its centrist viewpoint. There is also a small film studio that co-operates with companies in the Confederation of African Marxist Countries to turn out films that are shown in some east African countries.
Association Football is one of the two large sports in Puntland, the top two football teams compete in the local CAMC league but the majority of teams compete in the local leagues. There is a large football stadium in the capital and several football grounds in most of the large towns and cities. The other large sport is swimming and it is very popular in the east as it is closest to the sea.
The travel network is primarily based around the sea, the government has built several new canals to allow people to move goods and passengers easily. There is also a small road network but most people get around on foot or by water, the waterway network is extensive and cost millions to build.
The economy of Puntland is based around industry, although Puntland has very few natural resources the large shipping industry means that Puntland has the resources it needs for its industrial based economy, This industrial economy produces hundreds of utilities that are shipped out to other countries in exchange for money and resources. It has a de facto currency, the Puntland Shilling. There are several power plants in the country that provide electricity to the capital and a few other cities.
Under Article Three of the 1990 constitution everyone in Puntland is guaranteed a free education up to the age of 12. However, this has only rarely come into effect in the last five years as prior to this it was impractical to offer free education.
Puntland has good relations with Djibouti and the members of the Confederation of African Marxist countries, it has a tense relation with the ANZC mainly due to its continued imprisonment of some of the American officers.