12/05/08 (B447) Le Ministre éthiopien des affaires étrangères dément le fait que son pays aurait concédé une portion du territoire national au Soudan (Cf communiqué du CODEPP publié sur notre site) Dit-il la vérité ? Avec le Gouvernement éthiopien, on peut s’attendre à différents mensonges, comme nous l’avions constaté dans l’affaire d’Hasna ! – Ministry refutes hearsay ”Ethiopian territory given to Sudan” (En Anglais – Info lecteur)

Addis Ababa, May 11, 2008 (Addis Ababa) – The ministry of foreign affairs said some mass media and irresponsible bodies have been disseminating groundless information by saying that the government has given a part of Ethiopia’s territory to Sudan.

In a statement it sent to ENA on Sunday the ministry said that it refrained to respond to the hearsay as border issues need to be dealt with great care and as it believed that it is unnecessary to respond to such groundless rumor.

The ministry said it is not questionable that the border of two countries, in any part of the world, is decided in accordance with international law and agreement.

Accordingly, the border of Ethiopia and Sudan is decided in 1902 and 1907 with the international agreement of the then Ethiopian government and Great Britain, which then colonized Sudan. The border was demarcated in 1903 and 1909 as per the stated agreement.

The statement said another agreement was signed between the two governments in 1972 to demarcate the border again during the reign of Emperor Haileselassie I as the border had no sufficient demarcation marks.

The two governments have agreed to find sustainable solutions concerning resettlement and farm lands along the border, however, this was interrupted due to the 1966 E.C government change in Ethiopia.

The dergue regime also carried out various activities to find solution concerning the border based on the agreement.

Measures taken by the regime include, the formation of a committee, which included various government offices and researchers drawn from Addis Ababa University. The committee was set up to conduct studies on the matter.

In 1980 the two parties held a meeting in Khartoum, Sudan and reached agreement to restructure the joint border commission set up during Emperor Haileselassie I. However, the dergue regime was deposed before the border question was solved.

The government of federal democratic republic of Ethiopia has taken various measures enabling to establish sustainable and reliable relations between the two governments and peoples.

Accordingly, in 2001 the two governments have set up a special committee responsible to find solutions to problems regarding farm and resettlement land along the border of the two countries.

The government has enabled neighbouring regions participate in the committee with a view to ensuring the benefits of the country and its citizens.

The committee has been undertaking activities to prevent displacement and conflict between citizens of the two countries living along the border.

The ministry said not even a single Ethiopian farmer was displaced as concerned regional administration executives and farmers themselves were direct participants of the committee.

While the truth is this the destructive information being disseminated as Ethiopia’s territory is given to Sudan is aimed at creating conflict between public and government and also between peoples’ of the two countries.

It is not hidden from those disseminating the hearsay that border demarcation has its own law and system and government cannot make it as it likes.

Residents of the area know that the real situation in the area is far from the hearsay, the statement said.

No Ethiopian or Sudanese farmer has been displaced. Setting border marks is not concluded, the ministry said, adding, what is going on at present is preparation to set the marks in the future.