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Signs of hope over Red Sea dispute

Publish date: 27 November 2023
Issue Number: 1055
Diary: IBA Legalbrief Africa
Category: General

Ethiopia's talks with the self-declared republic of Somaliland about the possibility of using its port in Berbera town are progressing well, state-owned Ethiopian Press Agency has noted. Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed last month said access to the Red Sea was ‘a matter of existence’ for his country, which raised tensions in neighbouring countries with coastlines. As previously reported in Legalbrief Today, Egypt, Ethiopia and Eritrea are embroiled in a spat over access to the Red Sea. Eritrea’s independence in 1993 following a prolonged conflict with Ethiopia further complicated the situation. Ethiopia lost access to the Red Sea ports of Massawa and Assab, which had been pivotal for its import and export activities. BBC News reports that Transport & Logistics Minister Alemu Sime this week briefed a Cabinet meeting chaired by Abiy on the matter. Noting that Ethiopia uses the port in Djibouti for 95% of its imports and exports, he said efforts are under way to find alternative ports, and talks for the use of Berbera port are progressing well. EPA added that talks with the Kenyan Government were also progressing well for the use of Lamu port.

Full BBC News report

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