The new base, according to the source present at the negotiations, will be established at the coastal city of Berbera in Somaliland and will be an air and naval base. According to the government source the MoU was signed in the last week of September when a senior Somaliland delegation was in the UAE.
The self governing semi-autonomous Somaliland and the UAE enjoyed close political, economic and military ties since 2012.
The cooperation between the two countries intensified after the UAE’s involvement in the Yemen operations where the region’s strategic location south of the Bab al Mandeb strait proved crucial to their projection capabilities.
An area of 40km sq compromising of Berbera airport and sea front have been provided to the UAE for a period of 25 years and is renewable, the source added.
The base has been provided in exchange for security training, support and protection to the autonomous region, the source added, providing a much needed security blanket to Somaliland which borders Somalia to the south.