June 20, 2018 (ADDIS ABABA) – The Eritrean government on Wednesday broke its silence and responded to Ethiopia’s recent peace offer aimed to end a nearly two decades-long border dispute.
Eritrean president, Isaias Afeworki, today said his country will send a delegation to Addis Ababa “to gauge current developments directly and in depth as well as to chart out a plan for continuous future action”
President Isaias made the remarks while addressing nation today on Martyrs Day.
“The events and developments that have unfolded in our region in general and in Ethiopia in particular in the recent period warrant appropriate attention,” he added.
Eritrea’s move comes over two weeks after Ethiopia offered peace deal for her long- time rival Eritrea in a bid to arrest deadly tensions over disputed territories.
On June 5, Ethiopia’s governing coalition announced to fully and unconditionally accept the outcomes of a 2002 border commission ruling which awarded disputed territories including the flash town of Badme to Eritrea, as HornAffairs reported.
“The positive signals issued in these past days can be seen as an expression of this popular choice. The complementarity of both peoples and countries, their common bilateral interests and prosperity, are sacrosanct objectives to which we have toiled and paid sacrifices for two generations” said Isaias.
He added “As such, it remains a priority for which we will be actively engaged”.
Ethiopia and Eritrea fought a 1998-2000 border war which killed around 70,000 people from both sides.
The war ended in 2000 after the two rival neighbors signed an Algiers agreement.
Despite the peace pact, Ethiopia however refused to comply and refused to withdraw its forces from disputed areas, calling for more talks before to withdraw.
As a result, the two rival neighbors have since been on a war footing also both countries engaging in an on and off skirmishes.
During his inaugural speech in April, Ethiopia’s new Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed promised to restore peace with bitter rival Eritrea, raising hopes of peace. (HornAffairs)