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HomeEthiopian VideoEthiopian President Urges Reckoning with History at Diplomatic Week Exhibition

Ethiopian President Urges Reckoning with History at Diplomatic Week Exhibition

“People who do not reconcile with their history can not go far…” Ethiopian President President Sahle-Work Zewde

Ethiopian News - Sahle-Work - Diplomacy
President Sahle-Work Zewde making a speech during the opening ceremony of a week long exhibition of Ethiopian Diplomacy (Photo : MFAE)

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Ethiopia is commemorating Diplomacy Week. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs has organized an exhibition at the Science Museum in the capital, Addis Ababa.

During the week-long exhibition, Ethiopian President Sahle-Work Zewde, a seasoned diplomat with several decades of experience, delivered an opening speech

Highlighting Ethiopia’s 116 years of diplomatic history, she commended the Ministry’s contributions to Ethiopia’s diplomacy. She highlighted Ethiopia’s role as a founding member of the United Nations and the Organization of African Unity (OAU), now the African Union (AU).

Addressing the close link between foreign policy and a country’s internal situation, President Zewde mentioned the challenging years in Ethiopian diplomacy, particularly the unprecedented last three years. She didn’t provide detailed elaboration. Ethiopia has faced diplomatic challenges from Western nations concerning the conflict between Abiy Ahmed’s government and the Tigray People’s Liberation Front, along with pressures related to the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD).

In recent weeks, Ethiopia has encountered diplomatic pressure from neighboring countries following its announcement of a memorandum of understanding with Somaliland to gain access to the sea.

President Zewde also emphasized the importance of reconciling with one’s own history in her keynote speech. “People who do not reconcile with their history cannot go far…History records the good and the bad.” While acknowledging the contrasting values of the desire for development and civil war, she did not explicitly mention the conflicts involving Abiy Ahmed’s government, which has recently concluded a two-year war with the Tigray People’s Liberation Front and is currently engaged in another conflict in the Amhara region of Ethiopia.

In connection with the exhibition, the president expressed her hope that it would inspire the younger generation to contribute to the field of diplomacy.

Ambassadors and dignitaries including from foreign countries have attended the ceremony.

Watch her speech below ( she made a brief speech at the end in English)

Video : embedded from EBC YouTube channel
Cover Photo : screenshot from the video

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