Skip to main content

Last updated: June 2022

The situation in Nugal should be seen in light of the situation in the (neighbouring) regions of Mudug and Bari.

2022 CG SOMALIA region of Nugal -no real risk of indiscriminate violence

General information about the region

Nugal is located in Puntland in the north-east of Somalia and it consists of three administrative districts. The region’s capital is Garowe. Garowe is also the capital of Puntland, where the executive, parliamentary and judiciary branches of the state are based [Socio-economic 2021, 2.1]. As of July 2021, international and domestic flights appeared to be landing in Garowe airport [Socio-economic 2021, 2.2.1] .

Most of Puntland’s population comes from the Darood/Harti descent group. From a clan perspective, Nugal is rather homogenous, with the Issa Mahmud almost completely dominating the region and with Omar Mahmud clan, still from the Darood/Harti group, dominant in the southern part of Nugal and in north Mudug. Another smaller clan, the Awrtable, inhabits the area close to the Eyl port town.

In 2014, UNFPA and Somali authorities estimated the population of Nugal region at 392 698 inhabitants.

Background and actors involved in armed confrontations

Puntland’s state administration and security apparatus are reportedly fully in control of the Nugal region.

In the course of 2020, tensions between Puntland state President and Somalia’s federal President led to political tensions between Puntland and FGS over various issues.

Al-Shabaab presence and activities in the region have also been reported during the reference period.

There are no major ongoing clan conflicts. At times, small-scale clan frictions take place in the area close to Garowe; however, these tensions are usually solved through customary law and they do not turn into full-fledged or large-scale conflicts.

Nature of violence

About one third of incidents recorded by ACLED in the reporting period were clan confrontations and clashes between different tribal militia or tribal militia and security forces, in many cases related to disputes over land.

Al-Shabaab was reportedly involved in two security-related incidents, the shooting of a civilian in Garowe in February 2020 and a suicide bombing in March 2020 targeting the governor of Nugal and leading to two deaths.

Incidents of shootings against state officials and a grenade explosion have also been reported.

Incidents data

ACLED recorded 26 security incidents (an average of 0.3 security incidents per week) in Nugal region between 1 January 2020 and 30 June 2021. Out of those incidents, 9 were coded as battles, 2 as explosions/remote violence and 15 as violence against civilians.

Geographical scope

The large majority of security incidents in Nugal were recorded in Garowe district (24 out of 26), while the remaining two were recorded in Burtinle district. No incidents were recorded in Eyl district.

Fatalities among civilians and non-civilians

In the reference period, ACLED recorded a total of 16 fatalities in the region. Compared to the figures for the population in the region as from 2014, this represents approximately 4 fatalities per 100 000 inhabitants.


In 2021, the total number of IDPs in Puntland estimated by UNHCR was 388 500 [Socio-economic 2021,]. Between January 2020 and May 2021, PRMN reported an estimated 13 000 new displacements from Nugal. Only about 100 individuals indicated conflict/insecurity as the reason for their displacement, in this period.

Further impact of the armed conflict(s) on the life of civilians

The existence of checkpoints manned by security forces, district officials or police officers from the local municipality who collect fees as well as bribes has been reported [Socio-economic 2021,].

Looking at the indicators, it can be concluded that in the region of Nugal there is, in general, no real risk for a civilian to be personally affected within the meaning of Article 15(c) QD.

[Main COI references: Security 2021, 2.6.1; Actors, 7.6]