Skip to content

Category: Demarcation

Is the Eritrea-Ethiopia Border Fog Clearing?

The logic at Foggy Bottom is almost as elusive as the Company men, but it seems for once the fog may be clearing. In a recent State Department statement1 (from the Embassy in Asmara), the United States has stated, that it supports the Eritrean position (that demarcation must begin before normalization of relations). This seems to be a significant statement, one that has been alluded to before, however was disputable because of its actions contrary to it. Ethiopia must beware that its primary patron is beginning to cool towards it.


  1. Three Statements Concerning Eritrea 

Regional Aggressor or Regional Scapegoat?

Is it just semantics or just misrepresentation?

Eritrea is often labeled by journalists and governments as a regional aggressor (here1 and here2). The most often cited evidence for this designation is that Eritrea has been engaged in conflict with each of its contiguous neighbors as well as an overseas state. Ironically however, its neighbor to the south, Ethiopia has had border conflicts with four of its six neighbors, has occupied two of them in the past two decades and has actively fomented insurgencies in its neighbors. Superficially they both seem to be aggressive nations but as we know, nothing is as simple as it seems.


  1. Eritrea: The Siege State 

  2. Ethiopia rebels say capture base, kill 94 soldiers 

Ethiopia’s Eyebrow Raising Behavior

Over the weekend the Ethiopian Prime Minister, Meles Zenawi, raised the eyebrows of regional and international leaders, not to mention Eritreans and Ethiopians worldwide. To the Ethiopian Parliament, “to proceed [with] full border demarcation […] Eritrea, the options are two – either the regime changes its existing ill-ideologies or must be ousted.”1 Further, he continues, “We believe in dialogue, we have actually knocked on the door many times and they haven’t responded.”2


  1. Removal of Eritrean government would end border row – Ethiopia’s Zenawi  

  2. Ethiopia’s Meles in outburst over Eritrea  

Eritrea’s Ports Preoccupation of Ethiopia

Almost a decade ago two of Africa’s greatest hopes for the future were building societies to reshape the image of the African. Both nations claimed to encourage civility with one another and the rest of the world; an effort to change the relationship of their continent with the outside world. A new philosophy was born in Eritrea and Ethiopia, aside from embracing the quintessentially African (e.g. love for social justice, etc.), a desire for international tranquility.