Wednesday, November 23, 2022

Ethiopian PM, Sudanese Senior Official Discuss Bilateral Relations

Ethiopian PM Abiy Ahmed, Sudan's Sovereign Council Member Ibrahim Gabir on November 21, 2022

By Tesfa-Alem Tekle

November 21, 2022 (NAIROBI) – Ethiopian Prime Minister, Abiy Ahmed, on Monday discussed bilateral relations with  Ibrahim Gabir a member of Sudan’s military-led Transitional Sovereign Council who is touring the IGAD countries.

According to the Office of the Ethiopian Prime Minister, Abiy Ahmed and the visiting Sudanese delegation led by General Gabir discussed bilateral and issues of mutual concern.

The meeting comes one day after Sudanese and Ethiopian spy agencies signed an agreement to increase intelligence sharing on counter-terrorism and crime between the two countries.

Director of the National Intelligence and Security Services of Ethiopia (NISS) Temesgen Tiruneh Dinku on Sunday concluded a two-day visit to Khartoum where he held talks with his Sudanese counterpart Ahmed Ibrahim Mufadal Director of General Intelligence Service (GIS).

Sudan’s deputy military leader, Lt.  Gen.  Mohamed Hamdan Dagalo (Hameti) also met the Ethiopian official on Sunday. The director of Ethiopian intelligence briefed General Daglo on the latest developments in his country following a peace agreement signed between the federal government and Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) aimed to end the two-year conflict.

Gabir further briefed Ahmed about a road map prepared by Sudan, the Chairman of IGAD, to activate the role of the east African bloc in the areas of security, economic integration, and expanding the cooperation with non-traditional partners, read, a statement released by the Sovereign Council in Khartoum.

Also, the Sudanese senior official informed the Ethiopian prime minister of the talks with the Forces for Freedom and Change to restore a civilian government.

In recent years, relations between Sudan and Ethiopia soured over an ongoing border dispute, as well as a fallout from the Horn country’s controversial mega-dam project.

Relations between the two neighbours were further strained in December 2020, one month after the outbreak of conflict in Ethiopia’s northern Tigray region after Sudan deployed its forces along the disputed border with Ethiopia and took full control of the contested Al-Fashaqa area.

The land dispute stemming from Sudan taking control of up to 60 kilometres of land deep inside Ethiopia, has been worsening as Sudan alleges that the area was previously annexed by its neighbour.

Currently, both countries are trying to reestablish a cosy relationship amid existing disputes.

Leaders of the two countries have recently met on several occasions and discussed on a range of bilateral and regional issues of common concern.

Last October, the Sudanese Head of State and Chairman of the Transitional Sovereignty Council, General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan  paid a visit to the Ethiopian capital, Addis Ababa where he held talks with Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed.

Abiy and al-Burhan held the discussions on the sidelines of the Tana High-Level Forum on Security in Africa, which is took place in Bahir Dar city of the Amhara region.

Last week, the two leaders met on the sidelines of the UN climate change summit in Egypt last week and  at an  IGAD meeting held in Kenya on July 5, 2022.

In a speech to the House of People’s Representatives last week, Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed cleared Sudan from involvement in the war in northern Ethiopia.

Abiy said that Sudan had no role in the Tigray conflict which resumed on 24 August that ended a six-months truce committed by both warring parties.

Previously, Addis Ababa has been accusing Khartoum of sheltering and aiding Tigray fighters, an allegation the latter denies.


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