Ethiopia calls for calm in Eritrea-Djibouti border dispute

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File photo shows representatives of 13 United Nations member states vote in favor of a draft resolution on Eritrea during the UN Security Council meeting at the UN headquarters in New York, the United States, Dec. 5, 2011. (Xinhua/Shen Hong)
ADDIS ABABA, June 18 (Xinhua) — Ethiopia’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA) has called for calm in the border dispute between the two red sea nations of Eritrea and Djibouti, with which it shares common border.
The statement from regional heavyweight Ethiopia on Sunday will be keenly watched as the landlocked nation of 100 million people used to utilize Eritrean ports for its import and export trade 20 years ago.
That changed when a border war between Ethiopia and Eritrea from 1998-2000 which cost around 70,000 lives on both sides saw Ethiopia lose access to Eritrean ports and instead rely on Djiboutian ports.
Ethiopia views its access to Djiboutian ports, through which about 95 percent of its external trade passes through, as a national security issue, raising fears the Eritrea-Djibouti border dispute could turn into a conflict involving Ethiopia.
Ethiopia’s current non-permanent membership in the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) has also raised speculations about Ethiopia’s role in the scheduled Monday meeting of UNSC to discuss the Eritrea-Djibouti border tensions.
Ethiopia’s statement also supported Saturday’s African Union (AU) Chairperson Moussa Faki Mahamat statement calling for a deployment of fact finding mission to the disputed area.
Djibouti has appealed to the AU and UNSC to resolve the border dispute, while accusing Eritrea of moving its troops to the disputed territory.
A border dispute between Eritrea and Djibouti resulted in armed clashes in June 2008, leaving several people dead from both sides.
A mediation effort led by the Gulf Kingdom of Qatar in 2010 led to a Qatari peacekeeping force being stationed in the Eritrea-Djibouti border.
Tensions between Eritrea and Djibouti resurfaced after a 450 strong Qatari peacekeeping force stationed in their common border left the area abruptly on Wednesday.
The Qatari troops left the Eritrea-Border Djibouti after Eritrea signaled its support for Saudi Arabia led efforts to isolate Qatar.
Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Bahrain and United Arab Emirates have accused Qatar of supporting terrorism and severed ties earlier this month.
Qatar has denied the charge but its ties to regional Saudi rival Iran and support for various Islamist groups has put it at odds with fellow Gulf region countries.

9 Responses to Ethiopia calls for calm in Eritrea-Djibouti border dispute

  1. That’s him alright!!! Al-Toweel Isaias!! Now who in his/her right mind wants to attack Djibouti, a country of one of the most friendly people in the world? That’s him, Al-Majnoon Isaias. This man wants to pick a fight with everyone. After he successfully castrated any possible and imaginary domestic opposition in his fiefdom of Eritrea, he needs to start bloody war with everyone nearby and afar. He even wants to pick a fight with our Good Ole USA but to no avail. You see. That’s him. He has this deeply ingrained opioid addiction for violence that unless he finds someone to kill he gets this disturbing withdrawal syndrome. He went to war with Yemen, Sudan, Djibouti(Episode One) then with Ethiopia where he received a licking. If no one takes up his daring and challenge, he even fights with his own shadow. But this provoking of Djibouti may just end up being the beginning of his own undoing. What a loser!!!!

    Now watch his operatives and boot licking ‘liberation’ front foot soldiers pouncing at me!!!!

    Ittu Aba Farda
    June 19, 2017 at 5:46 am
    Reply

    • Hei the Woyane facebook agent. Your name is probably Tsadkan or Geretsadik; you are not Oromo, you are Agame. You and your families were begging in the streets of Asmara. What a savage you stupid woyane, the loser.

      Meles The Dictator
      June 20, 2017 at 5:50 am
      Reply

  2. “Ethiopia calls for calm in Eritrea-Djibouti border dispute? How moronic is this statement? A country that is on a war footing for over 25 years is acting as a mediator a peacemaker? One thing amazes me. I will never die for a country that is so totalitarian and sadistic such as Ethiopia and Eritrea. Eritrea has fought with all of its neighbors including with the Ethiopians for no valid reason. We are told it is a border dispute, it is a port issue etc… yet none of this issues are resolved by might or peaceful process. It is a stalemate that helps these despotic governments to stay on power using such worthless issues as worthy of dying for.
    As Eritrea is shunned by the West, it is aligning with ruthless Arab leaders by providing military base and other amenities while forsaking the Ethiopians to use the port for a fee to bring food to feed their starving population. TPLF which is the other side of the coin can’t be a peacemaker while it is looting and killing the Ethiopians at home.
    One thing is clear, in the name of border issue, religion, ethnicity, language or whatever our gun welding blind leaders tell us we will be killing each other with out abating for years to come. The so called independence for Eritrea did not brought the aspirations of the people. Instead it brought dark clouds over the entire nation with no foreseeable better outcome insight. For those morons who claim Ethiopia is better than Eritrea, you just telling us the right eye is better than the left one. As for me, both governments are a collection of cold blooded and ruthless people who are in power without the consent of their constitutes. They both rule by the barrel of the gun. As for me, Ethiopian and Eritrean leaders are one of the same. The conflict with Djibouti will only serve to confuse and diffuse untruth information to our people. Otherwise, it has no beneficial purpose for the people of Eritrea. I feel sorry for the soldiers that are killing and dying under a harsh environment with no purposeful future for their own lives and their country. Always at war. Hell to that! Life is too short to play such a sadistic and endless game. Flee that country!!

    Tesfa
    June 19, 2017 at 6:51 pm
    Reply

    • Tesfa you are a confused woy-ane boy!!1

      wedinakfa
      June 19, 2017 at 7:57 pm
      Reply

    • Hey, do you know what. Woyane has nothing to do with Eritrea – Djibouti border crisis; it will only exacerbate the situation. Both Eritrea and Djibouti claim the contested area, and it could have been resolved peacefully by international arbitration but Woyane is involved in Djibouti. Djibouti stalemated the peace agreement by saying Eritrea must return the remaining prisoners of war (POW), but in reality all of the POW were handed to Djibouti. They were advised by the Obama administration and the Woyane regime to serve their destabilization police. Ethiopia is 90% dependent on the port of Djibouti for import and export of goods, and it is natural for Djibouti to be owned by the minority regime in Ethiopia. Qatar left secretly without informing Eritrea, but Qatar informed Djibouti. So, what do you expect Eritrea should do? Eritrea did a very good job by occupying the area before woyane comes and stations there. The Ras Dumeira is mountainous, and anyone who controls the area has the advantage over the enemy. For your knowledge, Eritrean Red Sea coast extends from Ras Kiesar to Ras Dumiera; therefore, Ras Dumiera including the Dumiera islands belong to Eritrea and for this reason Djibouti will not accept peaceful mediation under the advise of the Woyane minority regime. Djibouti will continue cry and shout.

      Meles The Dictator
      June 20, 2017 at 5:35 am
      Reply

  3. None of my comments indicate any support for the TPLF. Nevertheless, blind EPLF supporters do not see the truth. They simply go with the flow to gain and glean the innocent and their resources. Worthless refuses such as like you are the problem of our people. They have no guts to face the truth. Mr. Why do you not focus your energy to help the thousands of refugees that are scattered in the Sudan and piled up in northern Ethiopia? Rather than supporting a government that is purely rogue.
    For the record, there is no difference between the TPLF and EPLF. From their inception they were cruel and sadistic against their own people. Furthermore, their 25 plus years of governance testify to their failure to uphold human rights and basic necessities to their people. Have you been in Addis, Mekelle, or Asmara and its environs recently? There is no light, no water, there is shortage of food etc… Such is life in the so called progressing Ethiopia and the north Korea of Africa ” Eritrea”. If that is freedom, it must be Orwellian.

    Tesfa
    June 20, 2017 at 7:10 am
    Reply

    • You should care about your own people in Ethiopia who are dying of famine and cholera. Over 90 million of Ethiopians despised you because you (TPLF) made their life miserable. Today, Ethiopia is almost not existent, it is only a name because Ethiopians are divided by ethnic hatred created by you – TPLF. You – TPLF invaded Eritrea to create your own empire but you – TPLF failed miserably and you – TPLF refused to accept an international arbitration to make things worst. You – TPLF have confiscated land from different regions including wolkait, afar, etc. You – TPLF and the rest of the Ethiopian people are like fire and petrol; when the wind blows to the fire carrying petrol, then the so called Ethiopia will be in hell thanks to you – TPLF. That is what I am concerned about if you (Tesfa) have the IQ to understand things.

      Meles The Dictator
      June 20, 2017 at 2:39 pm
      Reply

  4. Hi guys,

    You seem to have drawn lines to fight on the cyber space, but the Eritrea – Djibouti boundary tension is not a joke. Some of you such as Ittu Aba Farda and Tesfa criticise both governments without taking clearly identifying who’s doing what. As an Ethiopian, it is the welfare of Ethiopians that concerns me. I see an opportunity for Ethiopia in the tension between Eritrea and Djibouti to assert herself as a stabilizing force and power broker in the sub-region provided it plays right.

    Up until now, the AU and UN are on the same side urging Eritrea and Djibouti to resolve their differences peacefully. That’s the right position in line with international law. The problem is there is no call for Eritrea to withdraw its forces from the territory claimed by both countries. It is only if withdraws that mediation, conciliation or arbitration can be tried. The ICJ is also an option but withdrawal is effected and buffer zone created and peacekeepers deployed.

    Eritrea did to Djibouti what it exactly did to Ethiopia in 1997/98. It moved its ragtag militia to occupy the territory claimed by both countries. In case of Ethiopia, it had to go to war with Eritrea to force it out of the territory. It was after Eritrea was defeated and forced out that it humbled itself and sat to talk peace and sign for arbitration. Still stuck in its pre-war intransigent political posturing, Eritrea has refused to talk with Ethiopia to solve its boundary issues. But the territory Eritrea claims is still in Ethiopia’s hands with no possibility of recovering it (in whole or in part) without humbling itself once again and sit to talk.

    Now, the question is would Djibouti let Eritrea keep the territory it has occupied or force her out. The BBC reported today Djibouti’s Foreign Minister accused Eritrea of occupying disputed territory on the border.” The BBC quoted the Minister to have said “ . . . his country wanted a peaceful solution but was ready for conflict if necessary.” It’s not clear why the Minister has not demanded the immediate withdrawal of the Eritrean ragtag army from the territory it occupied. That should have been the “first order of things” and press statement; Ethiopia did that in 1997. Since Eritrea has not denied the occupation, the “first order of things” for the AU and UN should have also been to call for Eritrea’s withdrawal. That has not happened until now. Maybe there are waiting for the report of the AU Fact Finding Mission report which will confirm that Eritrea has indeed illegally occupied the territory. Once this fact is confirmed, they are expected to call for the withdrawal. If Eritrea refuses which most expect it would, then Djibouti might move its army to force Eritrea out.

    The call for Eritrea’s withdrawal from the territory it occupied should have as well come from Ethiopia without waiting for AU Fact Finding Mission’s report. After all, Eritrea has not denied it. As a member of the Security Council and a country with vested interest in the peace and security of Djibouti and a neighbour of both Eritrea and Djibouti, it should have taken initiative to show direction in addressing the problem. Making such a call would have not compromised Ethiopia’s impartiality as a power broker and a stabilizing force in the sub region. It is sad it failed to draw the attention of the international community by invoking international law and practice which sanctions illegal occupation territories.

    Apart from its failure to call Eritrea’s withdrawal from the territory it occupied, Ethiopia’s position on the tension between Eritrea – Djibouti seems to be to her advantage. The whole development establishes Eritrea’s track record of use of force to solve its problems with its neighbours. Isaias Afeworki is seen as a naughty boy in the neighbourhood nobody would be sorry if gotten rid of. I would be extremely careful of new development if I were him.

    Why should Afeworki be extremely careful? As the BBC suggests “any military conflict between Eritrea and Djibouti has the risk of inflaming the much serious and longer running border row between Eritrea and Ethiopia.” If Djibouti goes to war with Eritrea, Ethiopia will also go to war with Eritrea since Ethiopia and Djibouti have a defence alliance.

    Hadgu Berhe
    June 20, 2017 at 1:28 pm
    Reply

  5. Corrigendum . . .

    It’s me again, Hadgu.

    Thank you for those who pointed out typo errors in my opinion published above. I have corrected the errors and republished an expanded version of the same opinion including new developments. Keep in touch.
    __________________________________________________

    “You seem to have drawn lines to fight in the cyber space, but the Eritrea – Djibouti boundary tension is not a joke. Some of you such as Ittu Aba Farda and Tesfa criticise both governments without clearly identifying who’s doing what. As an Ethiopian, it is the welfare of Ethiopia and Ethiopians that concerns me first; the rest comes second.
    I see an opportunity and a risk for Ethiopia. An opportunity because the tension between Eritrea and Djibouti enables Ethiopia to reassert herself as a stabilizing force and power broker in the sub-region provided it plays the diplomatic and political game right. A risk because Ethiopia might go to war if Djibouti goes to war.

    Up until now, the AU and UN are on the same side urging Eritrea and Djibouti to resolve their differences peacefully. That’s a position in line with international law. The problem is there is no call for Eritrea to withdraw its forces from the territory claimed by both countries. It is only if Eritrea withdraws that new mediation, conciliation or arbitration can be tried. The ICJ is also an option but if withdrawal is effected and buffer zone created and peacekeepers deployed. Without withdrawal, peaceful settlement of the tension via judicial process might remain on paper unless it is in Eritrea’s favour. Eritrea will not withdraw from the territory it occupies if it loses in a judicial process making conflict to force her out inevitable.

    Eritrea did to Djibouti what it exactly did to Ethiopia in 1997/98. It moved its ragtag militia to occupy the territory claimed by both countries. In case of Ethiopia, Ethiopia had to go to war with Eritrea to force it out of the territory. It was after Eritrea was defeated and forced out that it humbled itself and sat to talk peace and sign for arbitration. Still stuck in its pre-war intransigent political posturing, Eritrea has refused to talk with Ethiopia to solve its boundary issues. But the territory Eritrea claims is still in Ethiopia’s hands with no possibility of recovering it (in whole or in part) without humbling itself once again and sit to talk.

    Now, the question is would Djibouti let Eritrea keep the territory it has occupied or force her out. The BBC reported today Djibouti’s Foreign Minister accused Eritrea of occupying disputed territory on the border.” The BBC quoted the Minister to have said “ . . . his country wanted a peaceful solution but was ready for conflict if necessary.” It’s not clear why the Minister has not demanded the immediate withdrawal of the Eritrean ragtag army from the territory it occupied. That should have been the “first order of things” in the press statement; Ethiopia did that in 1997.

    Since Eritrea has not denied the occupation of the disputed territory and island, the “first order of things” for the AU and UN should have also been to call for Eritrea’s withdrawal. That has not happened until now. Maybe there are waiting for the report of the AU Fact Finding Mission report which will confirm that Eritrea has indeed illegally occupied the territory and the island. Once this fact is confirmed, they are expected to call for the withdrawal. If Eritrea refuses to withdraw its army which most expect it would, then Djibouti might move its army to force Eritrea out.

    The call for Eritrea’s withdrawal from the territory it occupied should have as well come from Ethiopia without waiting for AU Fact Finding Mission’s report. After all, Eritrea has not denied it. As a member of the Security Council and a country with vested interest in the peace and security of Djibouti and a neighbour of both Eritrea and Djibouti, it should have taken initiative to show direction in addressing the problem. Making such a call would have not compromised Ethiopia’s impartiality as a power broker and a stabilizing force in the sub region. It is sad it failed to draw the attention of the international community by invoking international law and practice which sanctions illegal occupation territories.

    Apart from its failure to call Eritrea’s withdrawal from the territory it occupied, Ethiopia’s position on the tension between Eritrea – Djibouti seems to be to her advantage. The whole development re-establishes Eritrea’s track record of use of force to solve problems with its neighbours. Isaias Afeworki is seen as a naughty boy in the neighbourhood nobody would be sorry if gotten rid of. I would be extremely careful of new this new development if I were him. Why should Afeworki be extremely careful? As the BBC suggests “any military conflict between Eritrea and Djibouti has the risk of inflaming the much serious and longer running border row between Eritrea and Ethiopia.” If Djibouti goes to war with Eritrea, Ethiopia will also go to war with Eritrea since Ethiopia and Djibouti have a defence alliance. According to the defence “pact”, Djibouti at war means Ethiopia at war too.

    As much as there is interest of Ethiopia in the stability and security of Djibouti, Western nations fighting terrorism in the sub region would be unhappy with any action messing up with Djibouti.
    Guys, see the larger picture.

    Hadgu Berhe
    June 21, 2017 at 8:49 pm
    Reply

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