Ethiopia’s embassy in the Eritrean capital Asmara on Thursday was reopened by Ethiopian and Eritrean leaders Ethiopian Fana Broadcasting said. Fana Broadcasting said Ethiopia’s Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed and Eritrea’s President Isaias Afwerki re-opened the embassy in a brief ceremony.
Since signing an agreement in Asmara on July 9 to restore ties, Eritrean and Ethiopian leaders have moved swiftly to sweep away two decades of hostility since conflict erupted between the two neighbours in the Horn of Africa in 1998.
The two countries resumed transport, trade and telecommunication ties.
The regional bloc known for mediating South Sudan’s ongoing peace talks, the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD), lauded the dramatic diplomatic breakthrough between Ethiopia and Eritrea and praised Abiy for “wise and courageous leadership in … normalizing relations between Ethiopia and Eritrea.”
IGAD also said it looks forward to Eritrea rejoining the regional bloc and “taking its rightful place of collectively advancing peace and development in our region.”
Eritrea left the regional group a decade ago when accused the bloc of serving Ethiopia’s interests.
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, also endorsed the resumption of relations between the once warring countries, hailing the developments as “an amazing success! These kinds of developments give us hope.