Addis Abeba — “Sudan has encroached Ethiopia’s territory illegally yet Ethiopia sticks to diplomatic efforts,” the spokesperson of the Ethiopian Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA) ambassador Dina Mufti said in today’s biweekly press release of the ministry. Ethiopia has chosen diplomatic paths to prevent an escalation of the situation into unnecessary conflicts, he said.
Detailing Ethiopia’s efforts, ambassador Dina recounted that the Ethiopian government has consistently been delivering peace talks offers to the Sudanese government to handle the issue, including the importance of capitalizing on bilateral relationships. “We, more or less, overcome the escalation and our hope is that Sudan will stop its illegal encroachment. Sudan’s act is not in the interest of the people of Sudan and the region [horn of Africa] as well,” the ambassador explained. The spokesperson, however, speculated that there are some “foreign forces”, which he did not specify, are encouraging Sudan and reiterated Ethiopia’s stance, “Sudan must return Ethiopia’s territory and come to peace talks.”
It is to be recalled that in his parliamentary speech regarding the 2022 nine months evaluation, the Ethiopian Deputy Prime Minister & Foreign Affairs Minister, Demeke Mekonnen underlined that Ethiopia would continue pursuing a peaceful path “without inflicting any atrocities,” he said. “We are striving to resolve the matter in a peaceful way and Ethiopia will continue in that direction and we want to notify you that we’re working on that level.”
Demeke, in his speech, accused Sudan of harboring “terrorist groups” that, according to his speech, have been launching attacks on Ethiopia. He said, “Their base is in Sudan. Giving such support and being a base for such groups is tantamount to waging war for which we have officially notified..and we’re following the matter.” But he also said that Ethiopia will continue all its efforts “to resolve it in a peaceful way. In any measurement, we underline that our territory will be brought back.”
Answering questions from the media if the diplomatic relations of Ethiopia with the Arab world have become loose following the stalled process of pledged aid money aid and projects, ambassador Dina underscored that Ethiopia’s foreign policy has clearly been crafted to strengthen diplomatic relations with the Arab countries which, he continued explaining, have proximity with Ethiopia in terms of geopolitics, religion, and culture. “In fact, there are some ‘foreign enemies’ that might have twisted the issue of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam [GERD] and portrayed to these Arab countries that the Dam will hurt them,” adding,” Ethiopia shall continue filling the dam and it does not have any intention of hurting any country,” he asserted. He further explained that the delay of the aid or the projects that the Arab countries had promised could be due to various reasons, including their policy and political interest in Ethiopia but, according to him, that does not mean the diplomatic relationship has loosened.
The spokesperson further talked about the continuation of humanitarian aid to the Tigray region. “The aid shall be delivered as long as the people of Tigray need it. Tigray is part of Ethiopia and so do the people and the Ethiopian government has been striving harder than any other international institution in ensuring the deliverance of the aid ” he underlined.
In his concluding remarks, ambassador Dina stated that in this week alone the Ethiopian government has repatriated 34, 367 Ethiopian citizens that were stranded in Saudi Arabia and pledged that the repatriation shall continue.