Debunking Ethiopia’s “Five-point plan”
28 Nov 2004
The problem in the Horn of Africa is not
the lack of a plan for peace between Eritrea and Ethiopia. No, there is such,
even better, and comprehensive plan called the Algiers peace Agreement that was
crafted to only succeed by the international community including yes Ethiopia
and Eritrea, signatories of the Agreement. Here, the problem is Ethiopia’s
incessant attempt to renege on an Agreement that is guaranteed to be
implemented and whose full implementation the international community has
concluded to be the only way to sustainable peace (UNSC, 01 Oct. 2003).
The problem in the Horn of Africa is not
the lack of a resolution to the border dispute between Eritrea and Ethiopia.
No, the border dispute has already been resolved legally, conclusively, and
irrevocably by an independent and UN-sponsored Commission called Eritrea
Ethiopia Boundary Commission (EEBC) and exists in the form of the decision of
the EEBC, which both parties a priori agreed to be final, binding, and with no
right to appeal or recourse. The
international community including Eritrea and the UN/UNSC firmly support and
stand by the EEBC and its decision. Here the problem is Ethiopia’s blatant
defiance of a consequential legal verdict of an international court and
outright flouting of the rule of law in international relations simply because
it didn’t go its way.
The problem, only problem, in the Horn
of Africa is then Ethiopia’s defiance of any thing and every thing that the
rest of the world sees, accepts, realizes, and believes in and Ethiopia’s
defiance of every thing international:
International legal verdict
International resolutions and you name
It is, therefore, clear that the only issue
in the Horn is Ethiopia’s adamant defiance, for Eritrea is unequivocally
compliant and in line with the rest of the word.
With that background and by Ethiopia’s
own admission supposedly pressured by the international community and as an
apparent response to Security Council resolution 1531
(2004) of 12 March 2004 about which Kofi Annan reminded Ethiopia again in his
July 04 report and wherein the UNSC called upon Ethiopia to:
unequivocal acceptance of the Boundary Commission’s decision
field liaison officers and
dues to and otherwise cooperate fully and expeditiously with the Commission,
Ethiopia unveiled what it called “Five-Point
Plan for Resolving the Dispute Between Eritrea and Ethiopia” with a major
fanfare involving a speech by the PM, approval of council of ministers, parliamentary
debate and voting and media hoopla. First of all the title of the “plan”
reflects the morbid state of mind of Ethiopia’s rulers: Denial, because there
is no dispute between Eritrea and Ethiopia. The Hague verdict of April 2002 is
for real and it exists. That dispute has already been resolved and all what the
rest of the world is trying to do is to reconcile Ethiopia’s rulers with
reality and to bring Ethiopia into compliance with the decision that resolved
Having said that, the “plan” consists of
3 points already covered by the Algiers Agreement (items #1, #2, #4) and 2
points that are in outright contravention of the Algiers Agreement (item #3,
Ethiopia’s “Five-Point Plan for
Resolving the Dispute Between Eritrea and Ethiopia”
1. Resolve the dispute between Ethiopia
and Eritrea only and only through peaceful means.
This is the
premise of Algiers Agreement.
Resolve the root causes of the conflict through dialogue with the view to
normalizing relations between the two countries.
This too has
been provided for and is covered by Article 3 of the Algiers agreement.
3. Ethiopia accepts, in principle,
the Ethiopia-Eritrea Boundary Commission decision.
This is in contravention
of the Algiers Agreement. The decision of the Boundary commission is final,
binding, and with no right to appeal or recourse. Accordingly, The case is
closed and cannot be reopened, reargued, and renegotiated; no wheeling and
dealing. Hence, the decision of the Boundary Commission must be unequivocally
accepted as rightly and repeatedly called for by the international community
and the UN Security Council.
4. Ethiopia agrees to pay its dues to
the Ethiopia-Eritrea Boundary Commission and to appoint field liaison officers
Algiers Agreement covers this as well. Both Eritrea and Ethiopia are obliged
Start dialogue immediately with the view to implementing the Ethiopia-Eritrea
Boundary Commission's decision in a manner consistent with the promotion of
sustainable peace and brotherly ties between the two peoples.
This again is in outright contravention of the Algiers Agreement because
demarcation, the only way of implementing the EEBC’s decision, is the mandate
and authority of EEBC and EEBC only (Article 4.2 of Algiers Agreement).
That is all there is to Ethiopia’s “Five-Point
plan”: Bogus, gimmick, fraud. All Ethiopia needed and needs to do was to
declare unequivocal acceptance of the Boundary Commission’s decision and let
the Boundary Commission do its job. The rest would have then fallen in place: “there
is no crisis, terminal or otherwise, which cannot be cured by Ethiopia’s
compliance with its obligation under the Algiers Agreement, in particular its
obligation to treat the Commission’s delimitation determination as final and
bindin (Article 4.15) and to cooperate with Commission, its experts and other
staff in all aspects during the process of demarcation” Chairman of the EEBC,
14 Oct 2003. Absent that, Ethiopia remains defiant.