The Eritrean president’s visit to Khartoum came amid strained relations between Ethiopia, close allied governments and Sudan.
Eritrean President Ai Sias Afwarki is in Khartoum for talks with Sudanese officials, amid a two-day visit amid tensions between the Eritrean leader and Sudan’s close ally Ethiopian governments.
On Tuesday, Ishias, accompanied by Foreign Minister Osman Saleh and Presidential Adviser Yemen Gherabab, was welcomed at the Sudanese capital, International Airport, by General Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, head of Sudan’s ruling Sovereign Council.
According to a statement from the council, the two leaders began close talks on ways to strengthen cooperation between the two countries.
Eritrea’s information ministry said in a separate statement that Isia and al-Burhan “agreed to intensify their efforts to implement the agreement on cooperation in the political, economic, social, security and military fields”.
President Abdel Fattah al-Burhan, President of the Sudanese Sovereign Council, Foreign Minister Al-Sadiq al-Mahdi, and other senior Sudanese officials and dignitaries welcomed President Isis Afwarki and his delegation to Khartoum International Airport. pic.twitter.com/fY8osvvYrO
– G. Meskel in Yemen May 4, 2021
Isias met with Sudanese Prime Minister Abdullah Hamdok to emphasize the importance of regional integration in the Horn of Africa and agreed to “focus on a few concrete projects to consolidate Eritrea-Sudan bilateral relations within the regional framework.”
In February, Sudan accused Ethiopia of backing “third parties” in the allegations Decades old border dispute On rival lands in the fertile Al-Fashaga region with Sudan. This probably meant Eritrea, where Ethiopia had deployed troops in the Tigris region of Ethiopia to fight alongside federal forces in the conflict.
Following Sudan’s allegations, Eritrea sent its foreign minister to Khartoum to reassure Sudan that Eritrea was not part of the conflict between Sudan and Ethiopia. In late March, the United Nations announced that Eritrean forces were operating in the so-called Al-Fashaga triangle.
Decades of disagreement over al-Fagaga escalated in November as Sudan reported that the area was occupied by Ethiopian farmers and militias.
There have been several rounds of talks in Khartoum in recent December to try to resolve the dispute between Sudan and Ethiopia, but no progress has been made.
Sudan says its forces have recaptured most of its territory. But it has called on Ethiopia to withdraw its troops from at least two points, saying it agreed to demarcate the two countries’ borders inside Sudan in the early 1900s.
Ethiopia, however, accused Sudan of taking advantage of the conflict to enter Ethiopian territory, looting property, killing civilians and displacing thousands. More than 700,000 Ethiopian refugees have been sent to Sudan to fight the Tigers.
The Asia tour also came amid mounting pressure from the international community Withdraw the Eritrean army from Tigre.
Troops from Eritrea, a longtime enemy of the now-fugitive Tigris leaders, have also been blamed for a number of human rights violations, including civilian casualties and constitutional rapes in the Tigris conflict.