Today, is a historical day, in the terms that the Ethiopian Prime Minister Dr. Abiy Ahmed Ali visited the Eritrean capital Asmara and had talks with Eritrean President Isaias Afwerki. The last time an Ethiopian delegation was in Asmara must have been before the 2 year between the parties that lasted from May 6th 1998 ended on the 12th December 2000. There been skirmishes and smaller firing between the nations on the borders. As the state hasn’t been as friendly and even had interests of securing a friendship.
Therefore, that the Eritrean delegation was in Addis Ababa in June 2018, was already a show of a new direction, as well as the Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Defense Force (EPRDF) was talking about respecting the Algiers Agreement in regards of Eritrea. That has already shown positive directions, as the annexed land and the questionable boarder areas. Would go to their rightful owners and to the ones that has fought bravely for that land.
For now that is just dreams for the Horn of Africa, however, just the pictures of the Ethiopian PM together with the Eritrean President is a good look. Though, this is just the beginning. We should not jump the gun and think this is the end, there will be more twists and turns. As the uncertainty of what the Ethiopian leadership wants, if the Council of Ministers and the Parliament will enact to deliver back Badme and the questionable land back to Eritrea. If both parties will demilitarize this zone, to show as token of peace. Than, we are talking of a real progress between the nations.
That sort of act will not be over just sharing a few cups of tea and enjoy joyful celebration in the streets of Asmara. There needs more dialogue and negotiations, even if the Eritrean has told their stance. However, the Ethiopian also want their bargain. Who knows what that will be and what the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) want, as they would loose the land they started fighting over for over 20 years ago.
These talks today might be positive, the gesture of the PM to travel and meet the President is grand step for normalization of the nations, but until there is respect and works combined towards peace. There is uncertainty, as the military is still on stand-by on both sides.
It is a special occasion today, but I will not celebrate or be to joyful, until real progress is signed and respected by both parties. The PM still have to walk sideways with the TPLF. Who knows how they will react or let this play out. Because I cannot trust the TPLF or their ways, I am also skeptic about Afwerki, as his government is controlled by him and his tyranny. It is not like Eritrea is a peaceful utopia. Than, this would have made sense from the get-go and that the Ethiopian government was a fruitful democracy, which it is not.
There are many hurdles for both parties, but this is a good token of good faith and trying to establish need channels of communications and ways out of a stalemate between the parties. However, the narrow escape isn’t there yet.
But by the ways things are moving, it might be there in the near and not to distant future. Peace.