Neighbours on the brink of deadly clashesFrom ADANE BIKILA in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
ADDIS ABABA, (CAJ News) – AS Ethiopia and Eritrea teeter on the brink of the heady days that claimed the lives of an estimated 80 000 people until a ceasefire in 2000, the international community has appealed for restraint from the estranged neighbouring countries.
Troops from the two countries have clashed at the border in recent days in scenes reminiscent of the 1998-2000 where thousands were killed at the exact location.
Amid the two countries trading blame, the Chairperson of the Commission of the African Union (AU), Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, expressed deep concern.
The AU is headquartered in Ethiopia.
Dlamini-Zuma called on the two countries to exercise utmost restraint and to refrain from any statement and action likely to aggravate the situation and further endanger regional stability.
She underlined the two countries could resolve their differences and lay the foundation for lasting peace between them only through the recourse of peaceful means.
She regretted that 16 years after the signing, under the AU auspices, of the Algiers Peace Agreement, the peace process between Ethiopia and Eritrea remained stalled.
John Kirby, United States Assistant Secretary and Department Spokesperson, said his country was “gravely concerned.”
He called for both sides to exercise restraint and engage in political dialogue.
“We also urge both Ethiopia and Eritrea to cooperate in promoting stability and sustainable peace in the region,” Kirby said.
In 1991 Eritrea gains independence from Ethiopia after long civil war.
There have been simmering of tensions however over the demarcations at the border.
– CAJ News
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