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IGAD Executive Secretary Calls for Restraint at Djibouti-Eritrea Border (19.06.2017)

Ethiopia calls for Restaint on the ‘border conflict between Djibouti-Eritrea’ (18.06.2017)

AU Commission calls for Restraint on the Djibouti-Eritrea Border (19.06.2017)

The Chairperson of the Commission appeals for calm, restraint and stresses that the AU is fully seized with the matter.

ADDIS ABABA, Ethiopia, June 19, 2017 – The Chairperson of the Commission, Moussa Faki Mahamat, is following the recent developments between the Republic of Djibouti and the State of Eritrea in the aftermath of Qatar’s decision to withdraw its peacekeeping troops at the Djibouti- Eritrea border.

The Chairperson of the Commission appeals for calm, restraint and stresses that the AU is fully seized with the matter. He highlighted that the AU Commission, in close consultations with the authorities in Djibouti and Eritrea, is in the process of deploying a fact-finding mission to the Djibouti-Eritrea border.

The Chairperson of the Commission stands ready to assist Djibouti and Eritrea to normalize their relations and promote good neighborliness within the framework of relevant AU instruments.

UN Special Expert report of June 2017 reveals the hardships of the citizens in Eritrea!

The government of Eritrea is usually keeping it low-key and not telling their stories. The nation which has since liberation from Ethiopia since 1993. Therefore, the long-term stay of the Eritrean People’s Liberation Front (EPLF) and their President Isias Afwerki, who is still in power. His use of the power and keeping it all close, is the reason that the state of Eritrea is like it is. The oppression of their own citizens and total control. That is the reason for the fleeing Eritreans, as well as the military service and tight-control of the industries. It is all in service of the Central Leadership in Asmara. Which doesn’t concern the citizens, they are being used by the EPLF and their needs. Therefore, every time a United Nations report comes out, it reveals new aspects and shows by the admission of the diaspora who are telling the stories that needs to be told. Since the media, the government and all parts of society in Eritrea is silenced by the President Afwerki. Take a look!

Support of Al-Shabaab and North Korea:

In 2009, the United Nations Security Council imposed an arms embargo on Eritrea, primarily in response to Eritrea’s suspected support for Al Shabaab in Somalia. In its most recent report, the Monitoring Group on Somalia and Eritrea stated that it had found no firm evidence of Eritrea’s support for Al Shabaab. It also described the use of Eritrean land, airspace and territorial waters by the Arab coalition supporting the anti-Houthi military campaign in Yemen, as well as the construction of a permanent military base at Assab International Airport and a new permanent seaport adjacent to it.3 In November 2016, the Security Council noted the finding about the lack of evidence pointing to Eritrean support for Al Shabaab, but expressed concern for ongoing Eritrean support for other regional armed groups and lack of cooperation with the Security Council; it extended the arms embargo on Eritrea” (…) “February 2017, the Panel of Experts supporting the Security Council Sanctions Committee on the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) accused Eritrea of violating the arms embargo by buying military communications material from the DPRK. On 21 March 2017, the United States imposed sanctions pursuant to the Iran, North Korea, and Syria Nonproliferation Act (INKSNA) on the Eritrean Navy and any successor, subunit, or subsidiary thereof for prohibited transfer to or acquisition from DPRK of goods, services, or technology controlled under multilateral control lists” (Keetharuth, P: 5, 2017).

Arbitrary Arrests:

During the reporting period, the Special Rapporteur continued to receive reports of new cases of arbitrary arrest and detention. The reasons for the arrests appear to be those previously identified by the Commission of Inquiry, namely attempting to evade military service or trying to assist a family member in doing so; trying to leave the country; practicing an unauthorised religion; or offending a high-ranking Government or official of the People’s Front for Democracy and Justice, the sole political party in the country. The Special Rapporteur has received no official communication indicating that the Government has released arbitrarily detained prisoners or that it has provided information about the fate of high profile individuals subject to enforced disappearance” (Keetharuth, P: 6, 2017).

Food Supplies:

While some interlocutors told the Special Rapporteur that they had witnessed an active economic life during visits to Eritrea, with thriving markets and well-stocked shops, she heard from Eritreans in the diaspora that their relatives back home are struggling to meet their basic needs. While they confirmed the availability of food, they indicated that many households were unable to afford adequate and sufficient basic supplies, and were trying to cope with acute water shortages, especially in Asmara. As noted above, the recent UNICEF report confirmed this, indicating that half of the children are stunted. Reportedly, increasing numbers of people are leaving drought-affected regions in search of better living conditions. The ability to purchase food and other basic items has also been hampered by cash withdrawal limits which are still in place following the Nakfa currency exchange programme introduced by the Government at the end of 2015” (Keetharuth, P: 8, 2017).

Internet Freedom:

Since October 2016, reportedly, internet cafes must now require that customers register before being permitted to use the internet, allowing for the tracking of their browsing history. If confirmed, this new regulation would have an impact on the conduct of internet users and further restrict freedom of expression. In addition, frequent power cuts and very slow connections interfere with the use of internet” (Keetharuth, P: 8, 2017).

I think this things says a lot. The admissions and the connections to rouge elements prove the issues of Eritrea. This are just a few of them, there been more admissions in the past of the breaches of Human Rights, the lack of transparency and justice for the citizens. This proves the grand-issues of the Eritrean government and how they violate their own people. Peace.

Reference:

Keetharuth, Sheila B. – ‘A/HRC/35/39 – Eritrea’ (07.06.2017)

#QatarCrisis: Eritrea-Djibouti territorial dispute over Ras Doumeira flare up as Qatari Peacekeepers leave!

In times of war, the law falls silent.

Silent enim leges inter arma” – Marcus Tullius Cicero

The Merriam Webster defines the Snowball effect like this: “a situation in which one action or event causes many other similar actions or events” (Merriam Webster). At this moment and time, the Qatar diplomatic crisis has hit another level. A level that is unbelievable. To fellow Republics on the Horn of Africa are already in a military dispute over a territory, which they have fought over twice. Last time these nations fought over it was back in 2008.

These Republics are Eritrea and Djibouti. Who are two different states and with different approach to alliances and matters in general. Eritrea has in this crisis hold itself neutral to either Saudi Arabia and the GCC, while not doing anything with it’s affiliation to Qatar. Therefore, the Djibouti did earlier cut their ties with Qatar and with that the Qatari Peacekeepers in the area has left the nation. That Djibouti is important to Ethiopia and their trade is natural as the port and railway goes from Ethiopia to Djibouti. So if Eritrea want to hit two birds with two stones, they go and bang on Djibouti.

So the sudden cutting off Qatar has lead to change of powers and also of military stronghold between Djibouti and Eritrea. As the Eritrean has reacted to and sent the army closer to the disputed area. Both nations has claims to this area. Similar to activity on the Ethiopian border, which has been disputed since the independence of Eritrea. The same seem to be the case on the Djiboutian border and land.

That is why it isn’t surprising that the Eritrean government sends army and attack when the peacekeepers who has secured the territory since the last war in 2008. Certainly, the Asmara government want to take advantage, even if it costly, as the Djibouti sends their reports straight to the African Union and the United Nations Security Council to clear the air of the vicious attack from Eritrea. So the state can be seem as warlords and criminal in their acts on international scale. This is the own making of Eritrea, as they have done in recent years. Gone into war with neighbors without winning and neither getting recognition for their military operations.

There are reports that on Monday the 19th June 2017, the UNSC will take the dispute behind closed doors before finding out solution to the stalemate and current crisis between the nations. This is a long for conflict for the territory and not the first time Eritrea does this. Certainly, the GCC should intervene and help Djibouti, especially since the Republic sided with them. If it wasn’t just play for the gallery and needed display for the GCC. So that they have enough cards in the deck to hopefully get Qatar to give-in. Instead, there isn’t any indication of acts from KSA, Bahrain or United Arab Emirates, as the soldiers and territory is supposed to be ceased.

The GCC and allies have been in communication with neighboring Federation of Somalia to get them to cut ties with Qatar, without any luck, but Djibouti did so and even sent the Qatari peacekeepers home. Therefore, their proof of loyalty deserves to be repaid and that in full. That is if there are any honor in the GCC and their diplomacy in their sphere. So the Eritrean forces are now in the Dumera mountains and Dumera island, which violates the border territory of Djibouti.

Just to make matter worse, this report has also come out recently:

Not trusting his army, Ismael Omar Guelleh sent a request for military support to Ethiopia and China. He wants Ethiopia and China to send military men and equipment to the border with eritrea to impress the latter. On the other side asmara concerned the movements of Ethiopian troops to the conjunction between the three countries, Djibouti, Eritrea and Ethiopia, sent three military miles to its southern border or the region” (Hassan Cher Hared, HCH24.com, 12.06.2017)

And this one which is more on the nerves of Eritrea:

The statement by the retired Ethiopian general is so nerve wracking to all levels of the regime even the aging Eritrean president has wrote a letter to selected world leaders. “Washington feverishly worked at the time, through the State Department, to drive a wedge between the two peoples who have deep historical and strategic ties in order to foment a crisis and micro-manage the affairs of the Horn of Africa,” he is quoted by Eritrean state media to have said” (…) “Isais Afwerki always says it is not Ethiopia that is working against him, but the government of the United States of America. He says this to make himself bigger than life by antagonizing the world super power unsteady of another third world country which happens to be 20 times his tine country. “The ‘border dispute’ was a simple ruse as the boundary between the two countries was defined and determined without any ambiguity in colonial times. But Washington feverishly worked at the time, through the State Department, to drive a wedge between the two peoples who have deep historical and strategic ties in order to foment a crisis and micromanage the affairs of the Horn of Africa,” said the Eritrean president in the letter, according to the Eritrean ministry of information website” (Tigrai Online – ‘The Eritrean regime is nervous about an Ethiopian retired general’ 16.06.2017 link: http://www.tigraionline.com/articles/fear-nervousness-eritrea.html).

Clearly, if these allegations are true, this would give reasons not only for the GCC issues and the interference in the Horn of Africa, that the KSA, Bahrain and UAE have in the region. As they got the Djibouti government to cut ties and make sure they loyalty would be rewarded. While that is happening, the Eritrean have not taken sides, but takes advantage of the Qatari battalions leaving Djibouti. This gave way for a demilitarized zone, which they could come and takeover. This is what happening, but if the state of Eritrea are using the media this way and swaying the public as the reports are. Than it is sick and twisted, but not surprising with the massive overload of the regime of Asmara has on its citizens.

Well, the situation between Djibouti and Eritrea isn’t over, if Djibouti will get help from either their close ally Ethiopia or China, even the GCC, time will tell. Because they should see it is their time to help out, since they we’re taken by surprise, and has now also the advantage that the international community, the African Union and the United Nations Security Council will react to the hostile act of Eritrea. This is not a good look on the matter.

How news and media company describes the recent history!

9TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE CONFLICT RAS DOUMEIRA

There are feelings that even words will never translate. Feelings that we only feel in front of these heroes… Doumeira. In front of these men who face the enemy night and day. Depends on their lives. With only one currency: Homeland or death. Yesterday, no one was insensitive. ” Military, police, gendarmes, Republican Guards, whatever your rank, we all join in your pain to have lost some of your brothers in arms, some of which are still in an unknown position. In this moment of celebration, I fully associate myself with the sorrow felt by their families. We have lost soldiers who have become heroes that neither the history nor the republic of Djibouti will ever forget” (Djib-Live, 09.06.2017).

Let’s end it on a Djiboutian note:

Mahamoud Ali Youssouf statement about the withdrawal of the Qatari troops from Ras Doumeira, the Eritrean troops have move back into the area. “All options are on our table whether its diplomatic or military,” said the Djiboutian Foreign Minister” (Djiboutian, 16.06.2017).

Hopefully it will be sorted out diplomatically and not with arms, even if the Eritrean answered the other one with invasion of border territory. Clearly a violation and a breach of trust between neighbor states. That the Djibouti republic have a good case and also the upper-hand is evident, but if the Eritrean forces will back-down and go back without a fight. That is only a matter of their will retaliate if the Djibouti army returns to their expected territory. Peace.

Djibouti calls on the UNSC after a territorial dispute with Eritrea after Qatarian peacekeepers leave (15.06.2017)

Communique of the 31st Extra-Ordinary Summit of IGAD Assembly of Heads of State and Government on South Sudan (12.06.2017)

Somali Special Forces Strike Destroys Alshabab Training Base in Middle Juba (12.06.2017)

MOGADISHU, Somalia, June 12, 2017 -President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmajo’s statement on the dawn strike on Alshabab training base near Sakow.

“Earlier today, I authorized our special forces with the support of our international partners to conduct a strike against an al-Shabaab training camp near Sakow, Middle Juba region. This was a successful strike which destroyed a key al-Shabaab command and supply hub. This will ultimately disrupt the enemy’s ability to conduct new attacks within Somalia.”

“I said when I took office that security will be top priority for my administration. This strike will enhance security and reduce the threats of Alshabab.”

“We have long suffered at the hands of Alshabab which is supported by global terror networks. We and our international partners will take every possible precaution to protect our civilian population from harm during these operations while targeting terrorists.”

“All of us know somebody from our youth, our village, our families, who has been killed or injured by the senseless violence of al-Shabaab. I have personally met the families and the victims of several Alshabab attacks. For those who have suffered under al-Shabaab, and for the rest of Somalia, I want you to know that we are committed to defeating al-Shabaab and uniting our people.”

“To the members of al-Shabaab, I tell you that we are bringing the fight to you. If you, however take advantage of my amnesty offer and denounce violence, we will integrate you into our reform program. You have no future with the terrorists, but you can still be a part of Somalia’s future; a peaceful and prosperous future.”

Cessation of hostilities agreement between Dinka Bor and Murle “first step to dialogue and engagement” (12.06.2017)

David Shearer, who is also the Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General, was speaking during a visit to Bor and Pibor in former Jonglei State in the east of South Sudan.

JUBA, South Sudan, June 12, 2017 – A cessation of hostilities agreement between warring ethnic groups in the Jonglei region is a “first step to dialogue and engagement but we now need to build on that and show that there is a real dividend for peace,” the head of UN peacekeeping in South Sudan, UNMISS, has said.

David Shearer, who is also the Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General, was speaking during a visit to Bor and Pibor in former Jonglei State in the east of South Sudan.

“My hope is that the parties will follow through on their commitments,” Mr Shearer said. “Only through dialogue and engagement can there be any durable peace and then development.”  

“From our side, my visit has strengthened my view that we need to step up the patrolling of the key highway between Bor and Pibor. We will also increase our engineering work to improve roads and infrastructure in the Pibor and Bor region.

“Roads are the lifelines of communities in the area. They stimulate trade and economic activity and jobs. Some are closed because of insecurity, others through disrepair. We can help with both.”

Fighting has “disrupted trade, further degraded the economy causing real suffering for the people here,” Mr Shearer said. “I’ve visited markets in the towns of Bor and Pibor, where people told me that prices are high and produce scarce. That won’t help peace to take root.” 

The agreement between the Dinka Bor and Murle leadership to end hostilities between the two communities was agreed in May and witnessed by Mr Shearer. It outlined clear next steps; the establishment of an investigations committee and a peace conference to address the many grievances on both sides.

Jonglei region has a long history of fighting between ethnic groups which has centered around cattle raiding and child abductions.

South Sudan Diaspora activists condemned civilians killing in the ambush (10.06.2017)

June 10, 2017 (KAMPALA)-The International Youth for Africa has strongly condemned the killing of civilians along the Juba-Nimule road, and urges the South Sudanese rebels and pro-government to desist from civilians attack. Ter Manyang Gatwech, an executive director of (IYA), for the South Sudanese base human right organization in Kampala has blamed the rebels for killing four civilians in the ambush of Friday.

However, the rights body has called on the Sudan People Liberation Movement –In Opposition to stop attacking civilian convoy escort.

“IYA condemned in strongest term possible. Those who claimed the responsibility need to be taken to the court. Both SPLM-IG and SPLM-IO committed a lot of human rights abuse this including arbitrary detention, torture, killing, forced and disappears,” he said.

IYA is urging both the government of South Sudan and the rebels allied to former first vice president Riek Machar to sit down and iron out their differences, through peaceful and recommitted to the 2015 August peace agreement.

“A political agreement should be the first to stop the war then follow by the National Dialogue in the context of reconciliation, forgiveness and accountability.

The venue, should be two phases a constitutional round table to include political parties and main stakeholders, Opposition, Church, youth, women, and community leaders both interior and exterior,” he said.

However, he urged the regional leaders and the international community to pressure both sides to accept peace if it’s forceful mean.

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