Clash Between Sudan and Ethiopia After Attack at the Border
Clashes between the Sudanese army and the Ethiopian Army have been reported at the disputed al-Fashaga border area following the alleged arrest, execution, and public display of the remains of seven soldiers and a civilian murdered over the June 24th weekend.
On Tuesday, June 28th, Sudan reported that it had launched heavy artillery and reclaimed a number of its territories that the Ethiopian army had been occupying. According to Assefa Ashege, a top security officer in Ethiopia’s Amhara region, “Sudan’s army fired long-distance artillery from Monday morning until Tuesday afternoon, but nobody was hurt.”
The current dispute comes as tensions over al-Fashaqa, a location in Sudan’s Gedaref state where Ethiopian farmers have lived for decades and where the Amhara region of Ethiopia borders, have risen recently, along with a diplomatic tension over Ethiopia’s construction of a hydropower dam.
According to the BBC, military aircrafts could be seen circling the disputed area as the Sudanese attack went on.
The Sudanese armed forces said the Ethiopian army had violated all laws and conventions of war and international humanitarian law by executing seven captured Sudanese troops and one civilian.
In a statement released late Sunday, June 26th, the army vowed to stop “this cowardly behavior” and declared that “this treacherous conduct will not pass.”
Ethiopia’s capital city Addis Ababa has denied Sudan’s accusations that its troops executed seven Sudanese soldiers after seizing them. However, it has also asserted that Sudanese forces are encroaching on its territory.
Some groups of activists and journalists gathered earlier on Tuesday in front of the Ethiopian embassy in Sudan’s capital, Khartoum, holding banners with signs saying “Fashaqa belongs to Sudan.”
The two African nations are also embroiled in a dispute over Ethiopia’s filling of a massive hydroelectric dam along the River Nile. Concerns about security and stability in the East African region have been raised as a result of the rising rhetoric between the Democratic Republic of the Congo and Rwanda regarding a potential conflict over rebel control of a shared border.
Clash Between Sudan and Ethiopia Army Contd…
With frequent clashes between the armies of both countries, the population is living in fear of the probability of a potential war, as there was fighting witnessed in Tigray in November 2020, and thousands of refugees fled to Sudan.
Since then, Khartoum and Addis Ababa have been engaged in a violent verbal battle, exchanging charges of violence and territorial aggression.
Further tensions in the area, such as those surrounding Ethiopia’s contentious Blue Nile dam, are fueled by the boundary issue.
The Great Ethiopian Renaissance Dam has been challenged by Sudan and Egypt, both countries downstream, who have pressed for an agreement over the filling of its reservoir and the operation of the dam.
Khartoum and Cairo criticized Addis Ababa in February for deciding to begin power generation at the dam unilaterally.
The long-running dispute focuses on how Ethiopia should fill and replenish the reservoir as well as how much water it should release downstream in the event of a prolonged drought.
Egypt, which gets more than 90% of its water from the Nile, worries that if the dam is operated without considering its demands, the nation would see catastrophic effects. Ethiopia claims that the $5 billion Blue Nile dam is necessary because the great majority of its citizens lack access to electricity.
To prevent flooding and safeguard its own Blue Nile power-generating dams, Sudan wants Ethiopia to cooperate and share data about the operation of the dam.
Egypt and Sudan have stated that they want a legal agreement to control the filling and operation of the dam. The three countries have been negotiating for years without coming to an agreement.