The President of Somaliland HE Muse Bihi Abdi has arrived in Addis Ababa today. The Government of Ethiopia has given President Muse Bihi the highest honors ever received by any president from the breakaway region of Somaliland.

The Government of Ethiopia has previously stated that it will not directly deal with the regional governments in Somalia, including Somaliland state. Nonetheless, that mindset seems to have changed and Ethiopia’s move is perceved as a deliberate attempt to undermine the federal government of Somalia by dealing with Somaliland directly.

It’s worth noting that Ethiopia recently appointed Shamsudin Ahmed Roble who is an experienced ambassador to the new Ethiopian Consul General in Somaliland.

President Musa Bihi’s visit to Addis comes at a time when Ethiopian government declared the first patch of its naval contingent has graduated.

Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed recently said on state TV: “We built one of the strongest ground and air force in Africa… we should build our naval force capacity in the future.”

His comments revealed the country’s naval ambitions but his plans for how to achieve this goal have not been made public. However, Ethiopia’s latest push to enter into deals with its coastal neighbours signals something is afoot.

SR News source says the president of Somalia HE Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo is also expected to arrive in Addis shortly.