South Sudan’s president making effort to mediate Sudan and Ethiopia
January 14, 2021
On Wednesday, the Sudanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs and National Borders Commission organized a briefing for the diplomatic community in Khartoum.
It is about the “development in the Eastern border” — something the making of Sudan as far as Ethiopian farmers along the border are concerned.
The Ethiopian Ambassador in Sudan, Yibeltal Aemero, attended the briefing session in Khartoum. According to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ethiopia, he underscored the need for the two countries to resolve the boundary issue peacefully in accordance with bilateral agreements, and via joint border mechanisms.
The two countries have signed memorandum of understanding on the border issues as early as 1972.
Sudanese forces have been reported as having made incursions deep into the Ethiopian territory, and it calls its action as “recovery of land that was under the occupation of Ethiopian forces.” Sudan did so taking advantage of Ethiopian law enforcement operations against Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF). TPLF has lost the war in Tigray but thousands of its forces fled to Sudan as refugee, and there are speculations among Ethiopian political activist that Egypt and Sudan could arm them and use them against Ethiopia.
The Ethiopian Ambassador in Sudan made particular reference to the exchange of notes between the two countries on July 18, 1972 — as reported by MFAE. “Prior to the re-demarcation of the Gwynn line North of Mount Dagleish, the Joint Special Committee should submit to the Joint Ministerial Commission a report containing an amicable solution to the problem arising from settlement and cultivation, ” he is cited as saying.
The Ambassador also said that the Sudanese military action along the border will complicate the relations between the two countries.
It does not seem to be the case that the peacful solution is appealig to Sudan at this point. Rather, Sudan seems to be passionately escalating the tension. On Wednesday, Sudan accused Ethiopia of “violating Sudanese airspace,” shortly after a Sudanese military helicopter crashed near the Ethiopian border area.
On Thursday, The Sudanese Civil Aviation Authority (SCAA) announced the closure of airspace in the eastern part of the country — a measure that will surely affect Ethiopian Airlines commercial flights.
Sudan Tribune quoted director of SCAA as saying “The measure has been taken in the wake of the violation of the Sudanese airspace by an Ethiopian fighter jet on Wednesday morning.”
Ethiopian farmers along the Ethio-Sudan border in the north-western part of the country have been reporting different stories. They have been displaced from their homes by Sudanese forces and their properties is destroyed. Also, they report that the Sudanese forces made incursions up to 40 kilometers in some place.
Meanwhile, South Sudan’s president, Salva Kirr, made a phone call to the Head of the Transitional Sovereignty Council of Sudan, Al Burhan. They discussed military development along the Ethio-Sudan border, according to a report published by SUNA on Thursday.
South Sudanese president offered to mediate between the two countries to resolve the issue through political and diplomatic solution based on recognized international borders.
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