Ethiopia’s Prime Minister, Hailemariam Desalegn, has told local media that north African neighbour Egypt had agreed to stop the activities of anti-peace forces who are behind protests in Ethiopia.
The premier was speaking at a press briefing to address major issues in the country. He said Egypt had pledged to stop any persons and activities related to fomenting violence in Ethiopia.
The state-owned ENA said the PM revealed that the two countries were committed to halting activities of media networks, specifically mentioning the Oromo Media Network and others that are considered terrorist institutions by Ethiopia.
We will not harm the Egyptian people, but they should also help us in making use of our natural resources. I am here today to assure the Egyptian people that we must work together to accomplish our goals.
Ethiopian FM in Cairo
Meanwhile, Ethiopia’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, Dr. Workneh Gebeyehu, was in Egypt to meet President Al-Sisi and his counterpart, Sameh Shoukry.
Gebeyehu assured that Ethiopia was ready to help Egypt achieve their goals. “We will not harm the Egyptian people, but they should also help us in making use of our natural resources. I am here today to assure the Egyptian people that we must work together to accomplish our goals,” he said.
The Egyptian leader for his part also said Cairo respected the sovereignty of all countries and it neither interfered in domestic affairs nor conspires against its neighbours.
Ethiopia had in the past accused Egypt and Eritrea of accommodating persons who were behind widespread anti-government protests that started late in 2015 and throughout most of 2016. The parliament imposed a state-of-emergency to help quell the protests in October 2016.
Egypt has in the past flatly rejected claims by Ethiopia. Eritrea, the other accused, have also rubbished the allegations which were recently reiterated by PM Desalegn in an interview with the BBC.
Another area of cooperation where Egypt and Ethiopia meet is with respect to the Nile Dam and construction of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD). Leaders of the two countries and Sudan signed a deal in 2015 in a bid to ease tensions over the dam.
The leaders signed the cooperation deal over the giant hydroelectric dam which will lie on a tributary of the river Nile, tensions had risen over regional water supplies. The leaders said the “declaration of principles” would pave the way for further diplomatic cooperation on the Grand Renaissance Dam, which has stirred fears of a regional resource conflict.