US State Department: Special Envoy visits affirm commitment to addressing crises related to the Horn of Africa
Today, Tuesday, the US special envoy to the Horn of Africa, Jeffrey Feltman, begins a tour of the region which includes: Sudan, Egypt, Eritrea and Ethiopia.
According to a statement by the US State Department published on Monday, Feltman will hold meetings with officials from the four countries’ governments, as well as UN and African Unionofficials, and will also meet with a group of political stakeholders and humanitarian organizations.
The tour starts from today, Tuesday, until the thirteenth of May, and according to the order in the statement, the American official will travel to Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia and Sudan.
The US State Department said in its statement that the special envoy’s travel confirms the commitment of President Joe Biden’s administration in leading a sustained diplomatic effort to address the interconnected political, security, and humanitarian crises in the Horn of Africa.
The statement added that Feltman will coordinate US policy throughout the region to achieve this goal.
The Horn of Africa has witnessed great tensions since the Ethiopian government began a military campaign on the Tigrayregion, in the north of the country, last November.
The United States is likely to pressure the Ethiopian government to ensure that humanitarian aid reaches the victims of the military conflict in the Tigray region, and the withdrawal of Eritrean forces from the region.
The United States and other Western countries have repeatedly called on Eritrea to immediately withdraw its forces fighting alongside the Ethiopian government from the neighboring Tigray region.
Sudan and Ethiopia are witnessing border tensions after the Sudanese army redeployed its forces last November to the al-Fashaqa border area in the state of Gedarif.
Addis Ababa claims that Khartoum has encroached on its territory and bypassed bilateral agreements.
However, Khartoum refers repeatedly to the border treaty between the two countries penned during the colonial era, which gives Sudan the right to al-Fashaqa.
The visit will not exclude the tripartite conflict between Sudan, Egypt and Ethiopia over the Renaissance Dam, as Khartoum and Cairo demand the necessity of reaching a binding law agreementbefore the start of the filling process in next July.
However, Addis Ababa adheres to filling the dam next July, and it is unclear whether it wants to reach a settlement of the file in accordance with the demands of Khartoum and Cairo.