Ethiopia's “Acceptance in
principle” is rejection in disguise
04 Dec. 2004, ED News - While the world was waiting to see what is
new in Ethiopia’s “Acceptance in principle” proposal for peace with Eritrea, Ethiopia’s
PM could not wait to let the world know that there is nothing new in his “new
initiative” but repackaging and renaming of the same, long rebuffed and old
03 December 2004, PM Meles made his country’s partial acceptance of the border
ruling and the demand to renegotiate the ruling over the remaining rest clear.
To that effect, Meles told
resident diplomats in Addis Ababa in a briefing session attended by reporters
that “On the so-called 85 percent of the boundary (with Eritrea), we have said
all along that we don't have any objection and it can be demarcated straight
away," Moreover, “disagreement over the remaining 15 percent of the border
could be solved through dialogue with Eritrea”. This is exactly how Ethiopia rejected the decision of the
Boundary Commission in September of 2003. Then, the world body’s highest organ,
the Security Council rebuffed Ethiopia’s partial acceptance/demarcation in no
uncertain terms and called and continues
to call on Ethiopia to accept the ruling in its entirety and to cooperate with
the boundary Commission.
At that time PM Meles wrote
- Security Council set up an
alternative mechanism to demarcate the contested parts of the boundary in
a just and legal manner so as to ensure lasting peace in the region.
- The uncontested parts of the
Boundary, specifically the whole eastern Sector of the Boundary and that
part of the Central Sector where the river Mareb constitutes the boundary,
can be demarcated without waiting for the setting up of the alternative
difference here is that this time around it’s all presented in a politically
correct form: Dialogue instead of alternative mechanism, ‘acceptance in
principle’ instead of rejection, and 15% and 85% of the border instead of
contested and uncontested parts respectively.
revival and reiteration of its long denied and old position shutters all the
hope people might have falsely expected from Ethiopia’s “new initiative for
peace with Eritrea”, and Ethiopia remains defiant. And Ethiopia’s “acceptance
in principle” tale has turned out to be nothing but rejection in disguise.