In a crucial move to prevent potential conflict escalation between Ethiopia and Somalia, the African Union’s Peace and Security Council (PSC) has deployed former Nigerian President Olusegun Obasanjo for negotiation efforts.
Tensions heightened after the secessionist region of Somaliland signed an agreement with Ethiopia on January 1, granting Ethiopia control over a maritime port and a military base on the Red Sea.
The move has led to increasing strain in relations between the neighbouring countries, with Somalia expressing readiness for war.
The historical disputes between Ethiopia and Somalia and recent developments have created a delicate geopolitical situation.
Somaliland hopes that allowing Ethiopia access to its territory will gain recognition as an independent state – a claim it has asserted since breaking away from Somalia in 1991.
Obasanjo faces a challenging task as he undertakes negotiation efforts to ease tensions and find a diplomatic resolution to the current crisis.
The Peace and Security Council has urged Ethiopia and Somalia to adhere to AU and international law principles in their bilateral relations.
Somalia has declared its unwillingness to engage in discussions with Ethiopia unless the latter reverses its January 1 agreement with Somaliland.