The Sudanese army announced on Friday that there has been ongoing diplomatic contact with Ethiopia to contain border tensions, warning of the “outbreak of an all-out war” between the two countries.
This came in statements to Anadolu Agency by Sudanese army Spokesperson Brigadier General Amer Muhammad Al-Hassan, one day after the killing of a Sudanese officer and the injuries of seven soldiers, as a result of attacks by an Ethiopian militia backed by its country’s army.
Al-Hassan disclosed that: “The contact between Sudan and Ethiopia to calm the situation on the border strip has not stopped.”
“We wanted to give a chance for diplomacy in Khartoum and Addis Ababa, rather than the outbreak of an all-out war between the two countries,” added Al-Hassan.
He explained that: “The Ethiopian army and militia’s recent attacks on Sudanese territories violate previous agreements between the two countries.”
Al-Hassan called on the Ethiopian side to implement what was previously agreed upon regarding the demarcation of the borders between the two countries and the deployment of forces from both countries on both sides of the border.
Al-Hassan pointed out that the conditions at the border are now “cautiously calm”.
The army spokesman also indicated that Sudanese military reinforcements on the eastern border are not far from the site of the events.
On Thursday, the Sudanese army announced the death of an officer, the injuries of seven soldiers and the loss of another, in addition to the death of a child and the injuries of three civilians, as a result of attacks launched by an Ethiopian militia during the past two days, on border areas between the two countries.
There was no immediate comment from the Ethiopian side about the Sudanese army’s accusations.
Periods of preparation for the agricultural season and harvest in Sudan, in the border areas with Ethiopia, often witness attacks by armed gangs outside the Ethiopian authorities’ control, with a view to seizing crops.
On 21 May, a high-level Sudanese government delegation ended a four-day visit to the Ethiopian capital, during which it held discussions on the issue of the borders between the two countries.
Concluding the visit, the Sudanese government revealed in a statement that Al-Fashqa area on the Sudanese-Ethiopian border has long been witnessing attacks by citizens and Ethiopian militia, yet there has been no dispute over its affiliation with Sudanese territories, and Ethiopia has never claimed the area’s affiliation with it.
Al-Fashqa area, which covers an area of 251 kilometres, has been witnessing clashes between farmers from both sides, especially during the rainy season, during which people have been killed and injured.