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Ethiopia, EU discuss ways to further reinvigorate the strategic ties

Addis Ababa, July 4, 2023 (FBC) – Ethiopia’s Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary to Belgium, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, and EU Institutions held a fruitful discussion with Enrique Mora, Deputy Secretary General of the European External Action Service (EEAS) on bilateral issues and related matters of mutual interest.

The two sides, among others, discussed on ways to reinvigorate the strategic relations between Ethiopia and the European Union against the backdrop of EU Council’s conclusion on Ethiopia which was issued on 24 April 2023, according to the Ethiopian Embassy in Brussels.

Recall that on 24 April, the 27 Ministers of Foreign Affairs of the European Union gathered under the Chair of the EU High Representative (EU Foreign Affairs Council) unanimously approved new and ground-breaking conclusions to gradually normalise relations with Ethiopia.

It is said that this decision opens a new chapter in EU’s partnership with Ethiopia. It also stresses that Ethiopia is a key strategic partner for the EU in the Horn of Africa and Red Sea and that the EU stands ready to support further progress on the path towards lasting peace.

In these new policy conclusions, the EU expressed its full support to the Agreement for Lasting Peace through a Permanent Cessation of Hostilities (CoHA) concluded between the Government of Ethiopia and TPLF on 2 November 2022.

While welcoming the Green Paper on transitional justice, the EU encouraged the Government of Ethiopia to continue taking concrete steps in advancing options contained therein, in line with international human rights’ norms and standards.

The EU also welcomed the recently improved humanitarian access to the majority of the conflict-affected areas in northern Ethiopia, while acknowledging that the widespread humanitarian needs, including in other parts of the country affected by severe drought and other crises, require an adequate and well-coordinated response.

At the same time, the EU expressed serious concern regarding escalating tensions, alleged violations and abuses of human rights, and violence in various parts of the country, including in Oromia and Amhara. “The EU encourages the Government of Ethiopia to continue to work towards a transparent, inclusive, comprehensive and people-centred national dialogue process.”

The EU also stated that it stands ready to relaunch its regular multi-annual development indicative programme (EU MIP) to accompany further progress on the consolidation of peaceful conflict resolution, reconciliation, stabilization and recovery and macroeconomic stability across Ethiopia.

Among others, the Chancellor of Germany Olaf Scholz and the Prime Minister of Italy Giorgia Meloni have visited Ethiopia in recent months as a sign of EU’s readiness to normalize its ties with Ethiopia.

Since the approval of the Conclusion, EU member states have also resumed various supports to Ethiopia.

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