Somalia’s president pays rare visit to Eritrea

ADDIS ABABA – (warsoor) – Somalia’s president paid a rare visit to Eritrea on Saturday in a sign that Asmara is trying to use the opportunity created by a rapprochement with Ethiopia to improve its regional ties.

Eritrea’s President Isaias Afwerki’s decision to invite President Mohamed Abdullahi Farmaajo marks a new chapter for the countries after years of sour relations.

Discussions will focus on “Regional issues of interest to both countries,” Eritrea’s information ministry said.

Previous Somali administrations have accused Eritrea of supplying weapons to Islamist insurgents fighting the fragile government in Mogadishu. Eritrea has said the accusations were concocted by Ethiopia.

Eritrea’s President Isaias Afwerki (L) walks besides the Somalia’s President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed during a welcoming ceremony upon his arrival for a three-day visit to Eritrea, in Asmara, Eritrea July 28, 2018. Courtesy of the office of President of the Republic of Somalia/REUTERS

Eritrea and Ethiopia fought a border war between 1998 and 2000 during which tens of thousands died. The war was followed by a military stalemate but in April they signed a peace deal.

Asmara walked out of the East African bloc IGAD in 2007 in protest as Ethiopian forces entered Somalia to fight militants.

 

Source: Reuters

This post is also available in: Somali

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