Twenty years after separating from Somalia, Somaliland remains an unrecognized state. Life here is tough. Yet, a popular series, Dicing with Death, offers an eye-opening glimpse at the difficulties of life in a country that isn’t quite a country.
In the midst of the civil war, infrastructure crumbled, leaving behind mines in the desert and treacherous roads that every delivery driver must cross. Transportation once relied on camels, but nowadays, camels are exported to the Middle East, and locals believe that beef from the animal and milk from it has virile properties. However, the society has become one of the biggest consumers of khat, a plant that provides a cocaine-like high when chewed. But the plant quickly loses potency and needs to be rushed to the distributors, with delivery drivers tossing the bundles off the side of moving trucks.
Despite all of this, life in Somaliland may soon change with the untapped oil resource beneath its ground. Who knows? It may one day bring the wealth and recognition the state craves.
If you would like to learn more about life in Somaliland and witness a veritable documentary of the struggle which delivery drivers face in delivering khat to customers, then you should watch the Dicing with Death series.