MOGADISHU, June 3 (Xinhua) -- The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) said Monday it has facilitated the return of 17 members of the armed forces of Somaliland and Puntland who were captured in the armed conflict that broke out in May 2018.
Simon Brooks, head of ICRC's Somalia Delegation said the charity flew the released persons to Hargeisa in Somaliland and Puntland's Garowe, respectively
"The concerned authorities initiated and agreed on the process. We offered our services to both parties and confirmed our readiness to facilitate -- at their request -- the return of 17 now former detainees," Brooks said in a statement issued in Mogadishu.
Before their release, ICRC said its delegates spoke in private with the former detainees to ensure that all agreed to be returned. The ICRC was not involved in the negotiations that preceded the release.
Armed clashes between Somaliland and Puntland erupted in May last year in Tukaraq area of the Sool region, resulting into deaths, injuries and displacements.
The two regional Somali states have clashed previously since 2002 over control of disputed regions in northern Somalia.