Addis Abeba – President of the Somali region in Ethiopia, Mustafe Mohamed said the MoU recently signed between Ethiopia and Somaliland is set to strengthen development and neighborliness between the two signatories.
“The deal which Ethiopia made to acquire a military base and commercial maritime services based on the principle of give and take, brings good neighborliness and mends our country’s brokenness without harming others,” he said in a presser on Friday.
He emphasized the MoU’s particular significance to the pastoralists of the Somali region in diversifying markets for their livestock, ENA reported.
Similarly, the regional head of the ruling Prosperity Party, Engineer Mohamed Shale, said the Ethiopia-Somaliland deal realizes Ethiopia’s longstanding national interest of accessing the sea.
He highlighted the importance of the MoU to ease economic pressures in Ethiopia by lowering port service costs, and stressed that the deal was made in a way that “did not violate the rights of our neighbors, and based on the principle of mutual benefit.”
The party official said the primary beneficiaries of the MoU are the people of Somali region, and called on them to work with members and officials of the party to clear any confusion around the MoU.
Since its signing on 01 January 2024, the MoU, which grants Ethiopia access to the sea in return for international recognition for Somaliland, has caused tension in the region. Somalia, who sees the deal as a breach to its sovereignty and territorial integrity, rejected the deal with president Hassan Sheikh Mohamud signing a law nullifying the deal.
Following growing calls to de-escalate tensions between Ethiopia and Somalia, the regional body, IGAD has called for an extraordinary meeting of the heads of state and government of its members on 18 January 2024 in Uganda. AS