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A lasting peace between Ethiopia and Eritrea would be an enormous strategic win for the West.

By Daniel Runde | July 12, 2018, 5:48 PM

Abiy Ahmed














Ethiopia's Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed (R) and Ethiopia's Foreign Minister Workeneh Gebeyehu prepare to welcome an Eritrean delegation at the international airport in Addis Ababa on June 26, 2018. (YONAS TADESSE/AFP/Getty Images)

The United States has plenty of strategic reasons to immediately invest diplomatic capital in the rapidly thawing relations between Ethiopia and Eritrea. It’s a historic opportunity that, if it continues heading in the right direction, promises fewer refugees for the West, more stability in the Horn of Africa region, and a potential new ally for the Trump administration in Eritrea, assuming it changes some of its behavior.

I was in Eritrea a few weeks ago for my day job looking at why so many people are fleeing to Europe and other parts of Africa. These root causes of migration are underresearched and often misunderstood, even more so in countries such as Eritrea that few have ever studied. Eritrea has a recognizably bad track record on human rights, a recognizably bad track record on democracy, and a recognizably bad track record on forcing people to leave and become refugees. It has earned its reputation, though there may now be an unprecedented opening for reform.

While in Eritrea’s capital, Asmara, I met with several senior Eritrean officials and senior diplomats from Western countries. By chance, I witnessed President Isaias Afwerki’s speech on Martyrs’ Day. The president’s speech called for a peace delegation to Ethiopia — a breakthrough in light of the two nations’ 20-year conflict. Less than a week later, and for the first time in 20 years, an Eritrean delegation, led by Foreign Minister Osman Saleh, was welcomed into Addis Ababa. After talks with the delegation in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia’s prime minister arrived in Asmara in the last couple of days for a historic meeting with Isaias at which they declared the war to be over.

Clearly, this is a rapidly moving situation. Though remarkable progress has already been made, U.S. diplomacy will be needed to definitively end the 20-year Ethiopia-Eritrea frozen conflict.

Ending this conflict would strengthen Ethiopia’s new political leadership and create the conditions necessary for an end to Eritrea’s indefinite national service — along with Eritrea’s other human rights violations, which are a major driver of migration by the tens of thousands to other countries in Africa and to Europe.

There are many benefits to achieving a peace deal. First, such an agreement would create a new economic dynamic in the Horn of Africa, especially if Ethiopia were then able to use Eritrea’s two ports at Massawa and Assab. Eritrea would connect to an economy nearly 25 times its size. Second, ending this conflict could open the door to political liberalization in Eritrea. Eritrea uses the conflict with Ethiopia as an excuse for not making any government reforms. Third, a peace deal would open a new dynamic in the dysfunctional and tension-ridden Horn of Africa. It is true that Eritrea has supported bad actors in its neighborhood. If Eritrea had peace with Ethiopia, it would feel more secure and Eritrea would be less prone to causing trouble in the region and more likely to reduce tensions. Fourth, if the United States and Eritrea had a new relationship, Eritrea could be our Plan B African military base, as Djibouti is getting a little too friendly with China.

The first thing to know about Eritrea is that it nearly didn’t exist. The United Kingdom and the United States — through the United Nations — proposed merging the former Italian colony with Ethiopia in the early 1950s. Eritreans disagreed with this solution, fought a 30-year war against Ethiopia and won independence in 1991. During its struggle, Eritrea had no reliable friends. The current Eritrean leadership is made up of the former military leaders who led the country to its independence.

Eritrea has had tense relations with the West. In the early 1990s, the Clinton administration provided financial aid and military assistance to the country. Less than a decade later, the United States ended those relations and suspended the sale of weapons to Eritrea when war broke out in 1998. The Bush administration had serious concerns in the mid-2000s that Eritrea was providing sanctuary to al-Shabab terrorists, which led to the imposition of an arms embargo in 2009. The Obama administration signed an executive order in 2009 with a series of financial sanctions against Eritrea for its failure to address human trafficking.

I asked senior leaders in Eritrea if they see al-Shabab as a terrorist group, and all of them agreed that it is. It is important to note that Eritrea has been deemed al-Shabab-free for more than six years, according to outside monitors known as the Somalia Eritrea Monitoring Group. Given that this is the case, this would be a moment to revisit the sanctions on Eritrea and consider removing them.

Even if Eritrea has rid itself of its ties to the worst terrorist groups, it remains true that Eritrea has a persistently bad record as a human rights violator.

According to a 2018 Human Rights Watch report, “Eritrea remains a one-man dictatorship under President Isaias Afewerki, now in his 26th year in power. It has no legislature, no independent civil society organizations or media outlets, and no independent judiciary. The government restricts religious freedoms, banning all but four groups.”

Eritrea also has had tense relations with most of its neighbors. Its worst relations are with Ethiopia, which it has fought two wars against in the last 50 years. The latest Eritrea-Ethiopia war was fought over lingering border disputes and lasted from 1998 to 2000, continuing to cause conflict between the two countries to this day. This war was notorious for being one of the deadliest wars in Africa, killing some 90,000 people.






“The UAE mediation between Ethiopia and Eritrea has resulted in the signing of a joint friendship and peace declaration.”
Mustafa Al Zarooni/Dubai
Filed on July 11, 2018


Sheikh Abdullah voiced the UAE’s aspiration to ensure a durable peace between the two nations.


A number of diplomats and academicians have hailed the UAE government’s efforts to foster security and stability around the world.

They praised the role His Highness Sheikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Deputy Supreme Commander of the UAE Armed Forces, has played in effecting a rapprochement between Ethiopia and Eritrea – two African nations that have been at war for almost 20 years.

The UAE mediation between Ethiopia and Eritrea has resulted in the signing of a joint friendship and peace declaration. The two countries have agreed to re-establish trade relations, open their embassies and jointly develop Eritrea’s Red Sea port. They have also decided to reinstate the Ethiopian flights to Eritrea starting next week.

UAE’s Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, has welcomed the reestablishment of cordial relations between Ethiopia and Eritrea, stressing that such an agreement will positively reflect on boosting security and stability in both countries, the Horn of Africa and the MENA region.

Sheikh Abdullah voiced the UAE’s aspiration to ensure a durable peace between the two nations.

Workneh Gebeyehu, Ethiopian Foreign Minister, said the historic accord between his country and Eritrea was a result of the extensive efforts made by His Highness Shaikh Mohamed bin Zayed Al Nahyan and thanked him for the seminal role he played in the diplomatic breakthrough.

Dr Anwar Gargash, Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, said the UAE has become a key partner in the Horn of Africa, ahead of all other Arab nations that have a presence in such a vital region.

In a series of tweets on Tuesday, Dr Gargash said: “Maintaining political communication with the Horn of African countries has both risks and opportunities, but it is essential because the Horn of Africa is important for the security and progress of our Arab world. The long term policy the UAE is pursuing is gaining respect in the Horn of Africa and internationally.”

Talking about the UAE foreign policy, Dr Gargash said: “Our foreign policy is clear and transparent, which is based on credibility. First, our policy is Arab whose objectives are moderation, stability, counter-terrorism, development and common progress. Those objectives make the UAE a welcome partner in the region.”

Meanwhile, the UAE Red Crescent is continuing its efforts to support the humanitarian and development activities in Ethiopia. It is building 1,000 homes for the displaced people and completed the third phase of distribution of humanitarian relief materials.

President Yoweri Museveni (L) shakes hands with President al-Bashir at his arrival to the Ugandan capital on 13 Nov 2017 (Photo Ugandan presidency)

July 10, 2018 (KHARTOUM) - The European Union condemned two east African countries, Djibouti and Uganda, for refusing to arrest Sudanese President Omer al-Bashir, the only sitting head of state wanted by the International criminal court.

President al-Bashir was in Djibouti on 5 July to attend the inauguration of a regional trade zone. Also, he was in Entebbe on Saturday for meeting on peace in South Sudan with Presidents Yoweri Museveni and Salva Kiir and SPLM-IO leader Riek Machar.

“The European Union and its Member States regret that Djibouti and Uganda, both States Parties to the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court (ICC), did not comply with their obligations under international law and as State Parties to the ICC and did not surrender President Al-Bashir to the Court,” said

The statement, which is issued by the EEAS Spokesperson, further called on all Member States of the United Nations to abide by and implement the UN Security Council resolutions related to the referral of Darfur crimes to the war crimes court.

“The European Union remains a strong supporter of the ICC and is committed to enforcing international criminal law and to ending impunity”.

Sudanese foreign ministry didn’t react to the statement but the Sudanese embassy in Cairo distributed a statement by the Arab Parliament Speaker Mishaal bin Fahm Al-Salami denouncing the provocative EU statement against an Arab leader.



Source: Zazim, Israeli community action

At the height of the anti-deportation campaign, dozens of African refugees requested to join the Histadrut – Israel’s national trade union – with the hope that its political power could protect them from the government’s cruel deportation plan. Yet the Histadrut’s leadership rejected the refugees’ requests, citing “technical issues.”

But the refugees and union activists didn’t give up – and neither did our members:

Over 2,600 Zazim members sent direct letters to the Histadrut’s chairman – a Labor Party member with political ambitions for the Knesset – calling on him to accept the requests and remind him that we’re watching. In the meantime, refugees and union activists from Hadash [Israel’s communist party] took the case to the union’s internal court – pointing to international conventions that require the Histadrut to accept all workers, including asylum seekers and refugees.

Our pressure worked, and the Histadrut announced that refugees can join as union members and receive union protections just like any other worker!

But the Israeli government is still scouring the globe for a place to deport thousands of refugees, and the fight for a just and permanent solution for the refugees is far from over.


July 10, 2018 9.34am BST


Source: The Conversation

This week Ethiopian Prime Minister, Abiy Ahmed visited neighbouring Eritrea, to be greeted by President Isaias Afwerki. The vast crowds that thronged the normally quiet streets of Eritrea’s capital, Asmara, were simply overjoyed. They sang and they danced as Abiy’s car drove past. Few believed they would ever see such an extraordinarily rapid end to two decades of vituperation and hostility between their countries.

After talks the president and prime minister signed a declaration, ending 20 years of hostility and restoring diplomatic relations and normal ties between the countries.

The first indication that these historic events might be possible came on June 4th. Abiy declared that he would accept the outcome of an international commission’s finding over the disputed border. It was the border conflict of 1998-2000, and Ethiopia’s refusal to accept the commission’s ruling, that was behind two decades of armed confrontation. With this out of the way, everything began to fall into place.

The two countries are now formally at peace. Airlines will connect their capitals once more, Ethiopia will use Eritrea’s ports again – its natural outlet to the sea – and diplomatic relations will be resumed.

Perhaps most important of all, the border will be demarcated. This won’t be an easy task. Populations who thought themselves citizens of one country could find themselves in another. This could provoke strong reactions, unless both sides show flexibility and compassion.

For Eritrea there are real benefits – not only the revenues from Ethiopian trade through its ports, but also the potential of very substantial potash developmentson the Ethiopia-Eritrea border that could be very lucrative.

For Ethiopia, there would be the end to Eritrean subversion, with rebel movements deprived of a rear base from which to attack the government in Addis Ababa. In return, there is every chance that Ethiopia will now push for an end to the UN arms embargoagainst the Eritrean government.

This breakthrough didn’t just happen. It has been months in the making.

The deal

Some of the first moves came quietly from religious groups. In September last year the World Council of Churches sent a team to see what common ground there was on both sides. Donald Yamamoto, Assistant Secretary of State for Africa, and one of America’s most experienced Africa hands, played a major role.

Diplomatic sources suggest he held talks in Washington at which both sides were represented. The Eritrean minister of foreign affairs, Osman Saleh, is said to have been present, accompanied by Yemane Gebreab, President Isaias’s long-standing adviser. They are said to have met the former Ethiopian prime minister, Hailemariam Desalegn, laying the groundwork for the deal. Yamamoto visited both Eritrea and Ethiopiain April.

Although next to nothing was announced following the visits, they are said to have been important in firming up the dialogue.

But achieving reconciliation after so many years took more than American diplomatic muscle.

Eritrea’s Arab allies also played a key role. Shortly after the Yamamoto visit, President Isaias paid a visit to Saudi Arabia. Ethiopia – aware of the trip – encouraged the Saudi crown prince to get the Eritrean president to pick up the phone and talk to him. President Isaias declined, but – as Abiy Ahmed later explained – he was “hopeful with Saudi and US help the issue will be resolved soon.”

So it was, but one other actor played a part: the UAE. Earlier this month President Isaias visited the Emirates. There are suggestions that large sums of money were offered to help Eritrea develop its economy and infrastructure.

Finally, behind the scenes, the UN and the African Union have been encouraging both sides to resolve their differences. This culminated in the UN Secretary General, Antonio Guterres, flying to Addis Ababa for a meeting on Monday– just hours after the joint declaration. Guterres told reporters that in his view the sanctions against Eritrea could soon be lifted since they would soon likely become “obsolete.”

It has been an impressive combined effort by the international community, who have for once acted in unison to try to resolve a regional issue that has festered for years.

Risks and dividends

For Isaias these developments also bring some element of risk. Peace would mean no longer having the excuse of a national security threat to postpone the implementation of basic freedoms. If the tens of thousands of conscripts, trapped in indefinite national service are allowed to go home, what jobs await them? When will the country have a working constitution, free elections, an independent media and judiciary? Many political prisoners have been jailed for years without trail. Will they now be released?

For Ethiopia, the dividends of peace would be a relaxation of tension along its northern border and an alternative route to the sea. Families on both sides of the border would be reunited and social life and religious ceremonies, many of which go back for centuries, could resume.

But the Tigrayan movement – the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) – that was dominant force in Ethiopian politics until the election of Prime Minister Aiby in February, has been side-lined. It was their quarrel with the Eritrean government that led to the 1998–2000 border war.

The Eritrean authorities have rejoiced in their demise. “From this day forward, TPLF as a political entity is dead,” declared a semi-official website, describing the movement as a ‘zombie’ whose “soul has been bound in hell”. Such crowing is hardly appropriate if differences are to be resolved. The front is still a significant force in Ethiopia and could attempt to frustrate the peace deal.

These are just some of the problems that lie ahead. There is no guarantee that the whole edifice won’t collapse, as the complex details of the relationship are worked out. There are many issues that have to be resolved before relations between the two countries can be returned to normal. But with goodwill these can be overcome, ushering in a new era of peace and prosperity from which the entire region would benefit.


UN official list of human traffickers in Libya.

Note: This list contains 26 individuals and two organisations.

Full list here: UN Libyan Traffickers List

Of the individuals named, many hold Libyan positions, for example the Governor of Ghat (South Libya), Director Military Intelligence, Defence Minister, etc.

Most are Libyan, but two Eritreans are named [Fitiwi Abdelrazak and Ermies Ghermay], one is Sudanese [Abdullah al-Senussi] and one may be Egyptian [Sayyid Mohammed Qadhaf al-Dam]

Eritrea's Foreign Minister Osman Sale, right, is welcomed by Ethiopia's Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, left, on a visit to to Ethi­o­pia on June 26. Abiy on July 8 paid a visit to Eritrea. (Mulugeta Ayene/AP)

Ethio­pian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed traveled Sunday to Eritrea, once a bitter rival, for an unprecedented summit with its longtime leader, Isaias Afwerki.

State Eritrean television showed an Ethio­pian Airlines plane landing at the sparse airport in the Eritrean capital of Asmara, where a brass band was drawn up to greet the prime minister for the first such visit in two decades.

The two Horn of Africa neighbors have been sworn enemies for the past 20 years since fighting a brutal ground war from 1998 to 2000 that saw at least 70,000 killed. In the intervening years, the two sides have clashed repeatedly and supported rival rebel movements.

Abiy was hugged by Isaias himself at the airport, and they occasionally smiled and laughed together as they strode past the uniformed band and honor guard — a marked contrast to the Eritrean president’s normally stone-faced public appearances.

The two men were welcomed by rows of officials and women in traditional dress waving palm fronds before they retired to the airport VIP lounge, where they sat and sipped juice beneath portraits of themselves.

Before leaving the airport, Abiy waded into the crowd of welcoming women and exchanged hugs.

As the convoy of vehicles carrying Abiy passed through downtown Asmara, crowds lined the street and cheered loudly, spilling into the road and slowing the cars to a crawl.

The change in relations between the two countries has stunned observers. For the first time in decades, Ethio­pian flags adorned the streets of Asmara and other cities in preparation for Abiy’s visit, according to photos tweeted by Natalie Brown, the U.S. chief of mission in Asmara.

The rumored visit was confirmed by Abiy’s chief of staff, Fitsum Arega, on Sunday morning.

“Abiy Ahmed has left to Eritrea, Asmara today to further deepen efforts to bring about lasting peace between the people of Ethiopia & Eritrea,” he tweeted. “Our two nations share a history & bond like no other. We can now overcome two decades of mistrust and move in a new direction.”

Nearly 30 years ago, the future leaders of the two countries were comrades in the struggle against Ethiopia’s communist dictatorship. But after its overthrow and Eritrea’s declaration of independence, relations soured despite close cultural and linguistic ties.

Ethi­o­pia’s new reformist prime minister, Abiy, broke the deadlock between the two countries on June 5 by accepting the 2000 peace agreement that ended the war, which would involve ceding territory still held by Ethi­o­pia.

Events moved quickly after that, with Isaias accepting the overtures as a “positive” move and sending a delegation led by his foreign minister to Addis Ababa a week later. Now there has been talk of reopening long-closed air links between the two countries this year.

The summit will probably involve negotiations on how to begin the complex process of returning territories to each other and separating populations as well as restoring ties.

Under Abiy, Ethi­o­pia appears to be embarking on a new path of reform, but Eritrea has been characterized as one of the most authoritarian states in Africa.

For much of the past 20 years, Eritrea has been focused on its conflict with Ethi­o­pia, with substantial spending on its military and indefinite mandatory military service that has led hundreds of thousands of Eritreans to try to immigrate to Europe.

The meeting “heralds a new era of peace & cooperation,” Eritrean Information Minister Yemane Meskel tweeted Sunday.

In interviews broadcast live on Eritrean state television, people praised the visit and welcomed peace between the two countries.

“Peace is everything,” said an elderly man wearing a turban and sunglasses.


Eritrea and peace with Ethiopia: Four questions

%AM, %06 %396 %2018 %10:%Jul Written by

The leaders of Ethiopia and Eritrea are scheduled to meet soon to discuss reviving relations that have been in deep freeze for decades.

Analysts believe that ending their bitter dispute could be transformative for Eritrea, whose policies have been driven by the deadlock with its neighbour.

Here are four things to know about why the quarrel matters so much to Eritrea — and why ending it could reshape the country.

By Afp

Peace: Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, left, and Eritrean President Isaias Afwerki have the chance to end a dispute that has poisoned relations for years

Peace: Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, left, and Eritrean President Isaias Afwerki have the chance to end a dispute that has poisoned relations for years

How important is the dispute to Eritrea?


Eritrea contends — and a United Nations-backed boundary commission agreed in 2002 — that Ethiopia is illegally occupying land along the two countries’ border that belongs to Eritrea.

It was along this frontier that Ethiopia and Eritrea, a former Ethiopian province, went to war, from 1998 to 2000, in a conflict that killed around 80,000 people.

Since the 2000 Algiers agreement ended the war, Eritrea’s president, Isaias Afwerki, has used Ethiopia’s rejection of the subsequent boundary ruling to justify a host of repressive domestic policies.

These include jailing journalists and dissidents, refusing to implement the constitution and running an indefinite military conscription program the UN likens to slavery.

“The country was put on hold for 20 years and everything revolved around [the border dispute],” says Abraham Zere, an exiled journalist and executive director of the literature and rights organisation, PEN Eritrea.

Does Eritrea want rapprochement?

Yes, by all indications.

Ethiopia’s new prime minister Abiy Ahmed made the first move in June by announcing Ethiopia would withdraw from the town of Badme and other disputed border territories, in accordance with the 2002 ruling.

Eritrea responded by sending two top officials to Ethiopia, and later a meeting between Abiy and Isaias was announced, though no details have been given.

“I think it’s fair to say the Eritrean leadership is committed to political rapprochement,” says Michael Woldemariam of Boston University’s Frederick S. Pardee School of Global Studies.

Ethiopia has not withdrawn from the contested areas yet, but doing so will meet a long-stated Eritrean demand.

PEN’s Abraham says the offer was too good for Isaias to refuse, even if by removing the Ethiopian threat he risks increasing domestic pressure for reform.

“He is probably aware that it is the only way out. The peace proposal and engagement from both sides is not an option, but a necessity,” says Abraham.

How would peace benefit Eritrea?


Eritrea and Ethiopia are among Africa’s poorest nations, but while Ethiopia has seen its economy grow by double-digit figures in recent years, Eritrea has stagnated.

Analysts believe normalising ties would benefit both countries.

Eritrean industries could service the growing markets of its much larger and more populous southern neighbour.

The graves of Ethiopian soldiers who died in the fighting with Eritrea are painted in the colors of the Ethiopian flag in the disputed border town of Badme


The graves of Ethiopian soldiers who died in the fighting with Eritrea are painted in the colors of the Ethiopian flag in the disputed border town of Badme

“Eritrea is going to gain a lot, because it will be able to follow Ethiopia’s economic momentum,” says Marc Lavergne of the National Centre for Scientific Research in Paris.

Woldemariam argues settling the dispute with Ethiopia could also spur foreign investors to consider Eritrea free of the fear of incurring Addis Ababa’s wrath.

“It is likely that improving relations between Ethiopia and Eritrea will further solidify the Eritrean state’s rehabilitation on the international scene,” he adds.

Peace could also help resolve Ethiopia’s problem of lack of access to the sea: the country became landlocked after Eritrea, which comprised Ethiopia’s entire coastline, seceded in 1993.

The outbreak of war five years later stopped the flow of Ethiopian goods through Eritrea’s Red Sea ports, but trade and transport could restart if the two countries come to terms.

“The port of Massawa will get a boost and become one of the alternative ports for Ethiopia,” Lavergne says.

Who else is involved?

Nobody, officially.

Last week’s breakthrough meeting between Ethiopia and Eritrea was not brokered by any third party.

However, analysts say policy shifts by the US and Gulf countries towards the two countries and their dispute may have played a role in hastening the diplomatic thaw.

Eritrea has long accused the US of taking sides, blaming Washington for failing to push Ethiopia to abide by the boundary ruling, and for supporting Security Council sanctions against it.

Ethiopia and Eritrea

Woldemariam says the US may have decided it was time to find a new ally after Djibouti, a neighbour of both Ethiopia and Eritrea that also hosts an US troops, allowed the Chinese to open a military base on its land.

“Certainly, because of geopolitical developments in the Red Sea region — China’s presence in Djibouti, in particular — the US has some interest in normalising relations with Eritrea,” Woldemariam points out.

Eritrea has also, in recent years, strengthened ties with Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, which is reported to have opened a military base at Eritrea’s southern port of Assab.

That both are also allies of Ethiopia has led some to see a behind-the-scenes role played by the Gulf.

“These countries have Eritrea on a financial drip. They certainly took part in Isaias’s decision to negotiate,” Lavergne asserts.


Eritrea's president visits Abu Dhabi crown prince

%PM, %05 %484 %2018 %12:%Jul Written by

Eritrea's President Isaias Afwerki has made a rare trip abroad, meeting Abu Dhabi's Crown Prince Sheikh Mohamed Bin Zayed in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

The UAE operates a military base in Eritrea that it uses for its campaign in Yemen's war and the leaders discussed how to strengthen ties, according to statements from both countries released after Tuesday's meeting.

a man looking at the camera: FILE PHOTO: Eritrea's President Isaias Afwerki listens as he meets with Sudan's President Omar al-Bashir during his official visit in Khartoum © REUTERS/Mohamed Nureldin Abdallah//File Photo FILE PHOTO: Eritrea's President Isaias Afwerki listens as he meets with Sudan's President Omar al-Bashir during his official visit in Khartoum

A new prime minister took office in April in Ethiopia, Eritrea's neighbour, and his reforms have shaken up regional politics.

Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed has announced plans to liberalize the state-dominated economy and pledged to honour the terms of a 2000 peace deal with Eritrea.

Last week, Eritrea and Ethiopia said they had "opened the door of peace" after the first high-level visit from Asmara to Addis Ababa in nearly two decades.

That meeting raised hopes for an end to one of Africa's most intractable military stand-offs.

Ethiopia also has growing ties to UAE, which last month pledged $3 billion in aid and investments.

(Reporting by Alexander Cornwell in Dubai; Writing by Maggie Fick; Editing by Matthew Mpoke Bigg)