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HomeEthiopian NewsAfrican Union calls for de-escalation of Ethiopia-Somalia tension, urgent negotiation

African Union calls for de-escalation of Ethiopia-Somalia tension, urgent negotiation

African Union-Ethiopia-Somaliland

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Noticeable tension is growing between the Abiy Ahmed-led Prosperity Party and the government of Somalia after the former signed a  Memorandum Of Understanding (MoU) with the Somaliland government to secure access to the Sea on the Gulf of Aden based on a renewable fifty years lease. 

The African Union on Wednesday expressed concern about it. In a statement issued on the same day, Moussa Faki Mahamat, Chairperson of the Commission of African Union, said that he has been closely following the development resulting from the signing of the MoU.  

He called for ” calm and mutual respect to de-escalate the simmering tension between the Governments of Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia and the Federal Republic of Somalia.”

He is particularly calling for Ethiopia and Somalia to not take any action that may unintentionally result in the “deterioration of the good relations between the two neighbouring Eastern African countries.” 

His message also emphasized the duty to respect the Unity and Territorial Integrity of member states of the African Union.  The statement said that it is “imperative to respect unity, territorial integrity and full sovereignty of all African Union member states including Federal Republic of Somalia and Federal Democratic [R]republic of Ethiopia.” 

In terms of action, the chairperson is calling for a negotiation between Ethiopia [ Abiy Ahmed’s Administration] and Somalia to Iron out differences in a constructive manner. 

The Chairperson “urges the two brother countries to engage without delay in a négociation process to settle their differences in  the most constructive, peaceful and collaborative manner  to consolidate  and deepen their cooperation to serve peace  and security in the region.” 

In November 2023, Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed abruptly made claims before cabinet ministers and party leaders that Ethiopia must have access to the Red Sea – peacefully or by any other means.  His announcement alarmed countries in the region that shared the Red Sea Coastline including Eritrea. 

In less than two months, he signed a MoU with Somaliland – which the government of Somalia called a violation of the sovereignty of  Somalia. The action has stirred anti-Ethiopian Sentiment in Somalia. Social media reports indicate that more than 750 ethnic Somali passengers have canceled Ethiopian Airlines ticket reservations. 

The majority of Ethiopians do not seem to support the MoU signed with Somaliland. While some tend to see it as part of Oromumma’s alternative project of creating a “Kush Empire” with access to the sea, there are also those who tend to see the development as a sort of effort to recover lost legitimacy in Ethiopia. 

So far there is no indication, whatsoever, if there was any formal discussion in the Ethiopian Parliament in connection with the agreement with Somaliland. I

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2 COMMENTS

  1. I second the chairperson’s call for calm. But this MOU between Ethiopia and Somaliland is not the first port deal. The port service giant DP World of Dubai owns the Berbera facility since 2016 and has earmarked an investment estimated in hundreds of millions of US dollars. Since then Ethiopia has made a substantial investment in that deal and owns more than 50% of DP World Berbera. We did not hear about any tension between Somalia and UAE. This is a case of double standard. Somalia should see this an opportunity to turn its dusty and rusting away seashores into booming ports. That will not happen with leasing ports to competing military powers and that comes with risks if the military powers decide to duke it out. But with possible peace and stability Ethiopia has all the ingredient to be an economy behemoth in the region. This should be seen and taken as a wake-up call for Somalia. ‘Greater’ this or that never worked and will never materialize.

  2. Subject: “African Union calls for de-escalation of Ethiopia-Somalia tension, urgent negotiation” January 3, 2024

    Humble Reaction, 3 Jan 2024

    a) “Africa Union call for de-escalation” is of course noble advice.

    b) But are we Africans are not inclined to be noble and friendly for cooperation among ourselves ??????????????????????

    c) Let us be honest to ourselves

    d) I don’t care if we have millions and millions of Ph D Degrees. WE are Black Africans

    e) And we have our way of existing, NOT living.

    f) Go ahead, insult me seven thousand times

    g) Our Dear Black Africa will NOT change.

    h) And that is free delight for the notorious COLONIALISTS who have always been intently looking at Black Africa.

    i) And WE BLACK AFRICANS know what we want — ever since WE opened our eyes, ears and strength to walk.

    j) Yet, it seems WE ARE NOT BORN to protect ourselves.

    k) What is amazing and shocking is the fact that Black Africans have always been fully aware of the COLONIALISTS
    intention but NEVER touch the skin of the culprits. NEVER! NEVER! NEVER !

    l) Of course, we have perfect excuses like ————————— but will never fill the gap.

    m) Speaking for myself, I AM COWERED OF THE HIGHEST ORDER !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    THE END

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