El Wak, Somalia

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El Wak
Country  Somalia
Region Gedo
District El Wak
Time zone EAT (UTC+3)

El Wak (Somali: Ceelwaaq) is a divided city on the Somalia-Kenya border. The Somalian portion is located in the southwestern Gedo region, where it is the seat of one of the region's seven districts.


The place name "El Wak" literally translates as "God's well". In the Afro-Asiatic Somali language, the word ceel means "well" and the word Wak comes from Waaq, an archaic Somali term for God.[1] Many cities and towns in Somalia similarly have ceel as a toponymic element, which suggests the importance of water wells for the region's mostly pastoral clans.


El Wak is situated in the El Wak District. It is bordered by the Bardera and Garbaharey districts on the east, and the Somali-inhabited North Eastern Province to the west.


The area is rich in camels, cows, sheep and goats. Most of the local population are thus pastoralists, and also engage in small business and trade.


  1. ^ Mohamed Diriye Abdullahi, Culture and Customs of Somalia, (Greenwood Publishing Group: 2001), p.65.


Coordinates: 2°44′07″N 41°01′04″E / 2.73528°N 41.01778°E / 2.73528; 41.01778