Sudan related the border conflict with Ethiopia to the ethnicity of the Minister for Foreign Affairs, Demeke Mekonnen
It is evident that ethnic politics, which has a constitutional basis with a support administrative structure, made Ethiopia weaker in terms of dealing with domestic political and security issues, and also in the face of external aggression. It is not secret some state actors were funding radical ethnic nationalists movements against the state of Ethiopia.
The task of ensuring security in the Tigray region of Ethiopia, among other areas, seems to be getting murkier despite the Ethiopian Defense Force giving a blow to Tigray People’s Liberation Front’s project of restoration to power.
The development in the region provided Sudan with the opportunity to invade Ethiopian territories from which Ethiopian forces withdrew to respond to the TPLF forces.
Ardent ethnic Tigray activists are busy trying to give the story of TPLF’s irresponsible and badly planned attack on the Ethiopian Defense Force a twist to make it sound as a war declared on ethnic Tigreans. The organization’s spokesperson Getachew Reda said, after TPLF lost the war, that it does not matter if the Ethiopian Forces took control of Mekelle and all the cities in the region. He said Tigray will be ungovernable. And pro-TPLF activists seem to be doing that through their advocacy works for which they are spending left, right and center to have media personalities and non-state actors on board.
Sudan playing ethnic politics
Perhaps Sudan is the first state actor to play the ethnic-politics card, for purposes of international politics, in the post TPLF Ethiopia.
The Foreign Ministry on Sunday published a statement regarding the border issue. But it rather tried to frame it as a matter relevant to Amhara, not Ethiopia.
The gist of the statement is cited by the Sudan Tribune : “The Sudanese foreign ministry issued a virulent response to this statement, hinting that Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister of Ethiopia, Demeke Mekonnen who is an Amhara seeks through this conflict to defend the interests of the Amhara Region and jeopardizes the interests of Ethiopia.”
For Sudanese Foreign Ministry, the border came to be a source of conflict after Demeke Mekonen became Foreign Affairs Minister.
“The Sudanese-Ethiopian borders were never a source of conflict (between the two countries) until the coming to the Ethiopian Ministry of Foreign Affairs of someone who uses it to serve interests and purposes of a specific ethnic group. To achieve it, he is ready to gamble with the great interests of the Ethiopian people, their security and stability (…),” Sudan Tribune quoted the statement from the Ministry.
Indeed, there was no border conflict between the two countries. It happened after Sudanese forces took control of Ethiopian territories following a TPLF attack on Ethiopian Defense Force.
The statement from Sudan was supposedly a response to the Ethiopian position that ” the conflict being trumpeted by the Sudanese government’s military wing could only serve the interests of a third party at the expense of the Sudanese people.”
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