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Embaixada da Etiópia
Brasília, Brasil

May 27,2016

News in brief

Africa and the African Union

The first ever World Humanitarian Summit took place this week in Istanbul with UN Secretary-General, Ban Ki-Moon, joining , 55 Heads of State and Governments, representatives from173 Member States, 350 private sector representatives, and over 2000 people from civil society and non-governmental organizations, to discuss the strains on global humanitarian action and the rising  humanitarian needs around the world. (See article)

The UN Security Council adopted a Presidential Statement on Tuesday (May 24) commending the increased contribution of the African Union to the maintenance of peace and security, and acknowledging the progress made in cooperation between the UN and the African Union. (See article)


The President of the Republic of Korea, President Park Geun-hye, is on a State Visit to Ethiopia this week (May 25-28). She has held talks with President Dr. Mulatu Teshome and met Prime Minister Hailemariam Dessalegn as well as African Union Commission Chairperson, Dr. Dlamini-Zuma. President Park also attended Ethio-Korean Business Summit on Friday (May 27). After her four day visit to Ethiopia she is also visiting Kenya and Uganda. (See article)

Ethiopia is celebrating the 25th anniversary of National Day, the anniversary of the downfall of the oppressive military dictatorship of the Derg in 1991, on Saturday (May 28, ‘Ginbot 20'). As part of the celebrations, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs held a panel discussion on Ethiopia's Foreign Policy Journey of the Past 25 Years at the Sheraton Addis Hotel on Wednesday (May 25), attended by members of the diplomatic community in Addis Ababa, higher officials, academics, scholars and others. (See article)

Ethiopia officially celebrated "Africa Day" on May 25 for the first time with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ethiopia organizing with a panel discussion at Addis Ababa's Hilton Hotel on "Pan-Africanism and its significance in the 21st century". (See article)

Ethiopia's delegation to the World Humanitarian Summit was led by Demeke Mekonnen, Deputy PM and Coordinator mof the Economic Cluster, and included Getachew Reda, Head of the Government Communications Agency Office with the rank of Minister, and Sufian Ahmed, Adviser to the Prime Minister and former Minister of Finance and Economic Development. (See article)

Ethiopia's Minister of Foreign Affairs and Former Minister of Health, Dr. Tedros Adhanom, formally announced his candidacy for Director-General of the World Health Organization (WHO) at a press conference at the United Nations in Geneva on Tuesday (May 24). (See article)

State Minister Ambassador Taye Atske-Selassie met Professor Petteri Taalas, Secretary General of the World Metrological Organization (WMO), on Tuesday (May 24). The meeting discussed the issue of relocating the World Metrological Organization Regional Office for Africa from Geneva to Ethiopia and the ongoing cooperation between WMO and Ethiopia.

State Minister Ambassador Taye briefed a 19-person delegation of senior military officials and academics from the UK Royal College of Defense Studies on peace, security, geopolitical and environmental issues of the Horn of Africa on Tuesday (May 23).

Ethiopia's Ambassador to South Sudan, Ambassador Fesseha Shawel said on Tuesday that Ethiopia troops had crossed into South Sudan with the approval of the South Sudan government to facilitate the work of the Governor of Gambella Regional State and the Governor of South Sudan's Boma state, Baba Bedan, in recovering the children abducted by Murle tribesmen last month. 56 children have been rescued and returned to Ethiopia so far.


The 25th anniversary of the de facto independence of Eritrea on May 24 1991 was celebrated on Tuesday in Asmara and across Eritrea. President Isaias told the people Eritrea was "now poised to embark on greater and more expansive development programs", and promised "all legal, diplomatic, informational, and political campaigns will be carried out with greater pace and better organization". (See article)

A medical team from Sudan conducted eye surgeries for over 400 Eritreans in Massawa last week as well as ophthalmological diagnosis for more than 1000 Eritreans who had been suffering from sight disabilities. The team provided medicines and eyeglasses to the patients. Earlier in the month they had also conducted eye surgeries for patients in Asmara.


President Kenyatta told members of the UN Security Council on a visit to Nairobi that Kenya might withdraw its troops from Somalia if the international community failed to resolve the shortage of funding for AMISOM forces. He said funding cuts to AMISOM could not be filled by participating countries.

President Uhuru Kenyatta concluded a three-day working visit to the three counties of Mandera, Wajir and Garissa in Kenya's North Eastern region at the end of last week with a call for peace and unity. He said the number of security officers has been increased and modern equipment provided to help them cope with security challenges and urged residents to be vigilant and to cooperate with security agencies.

Deputy President William Ruto told the World Humanitarian Summit on Monday (May 23) that the Dadaab camp complex had become a burden to Kenya. It was a security threat, a haven for terrorism and a conduit of contraband goods as well as a danger to the environment. (See article)

Kenya's Lamu County Commissioner Joseph Kanyiri said on Sunday (May 22) that the security forces which had been conducting Operation Linda Boni for the last nine months in and around the Boni Forest, had successfully flushed out Al-Shabaab militants from the area. The operation has been a huge success and Lamu County was now stable and secure. Security forces remained to man the area and carry out infrastructural improvements.


Somali President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud issued a presidential decree with immediate effect on Sunday to announce that the elections would be held as scheduled in line with the recent agreement by the National Leadership Forum's ‘guiding principles'. His announcement came after the Somali Federal Parliament again delayed a vote to approve the election process. (See article)

President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud told a World Humanitarian Summit plenary session in Istanbul that resolving the humanitarian situation in Somalia would be difficult without first addressing security challenges. He stressed security was his country's number one priority and the "mother of all solutions", adding "We will not fix our humanitarian situation without tackling security first."

President Mohamud told the BBC's Somali Service on Wednesday (May 25) that closing Dadaab and sending back refugees en masse would worsen the security situation in Somalia. He said: "Returning refugees by force will only pose enormous challenges and will not solve anything at all." He hoped Kenya would not go ahead with its plans.

President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud, and Mohammed Ahmed Al Othman, UAE Ambassador to Somalia, laid the foundation stone for the second phase of the Sheikh Sayed Hospital in Mogadishu, on Saturday (May 21). The ceremony was attended by heads of diplomatic missions and Somali government officials.

Interpol warned on Wednesday (May 25) that Al-Shabaab was making efforts to control trade in wildlife products after losing control over the key charcoal trafficking routes in Somalia to AMISOM. It also suggested Al-Shabaab had created links with Nigeria's Boko Haram in order to control the trade routes.

The Humanitarian Unit of AMISOM concluded a weeklong civil-military coordination workshop on Tuesday (May 23) in Kismayo. The workshop, attended by representatives from the Burundi, Ethiopian and Kenya contingents with AMISOM, and the  Somali National Army as well as police officers from AMISOM and the Somali Police Force, discussed how to enhance civil-military relations and disseminate the Somalia Country Specific Humanitarian Guidelines.

A two-day meeting of AMISOM Sector Commanders took place in Mogadishu at the beginning of the week. AU Special Representative for Somalia, Ambassador Madeira, told the forum Al-Shabaab's effectiveness came from its capacity to split into small groups which were difficult to detect, its mobility and its capacity to surprise. He said the people need to be "harnessed and converted to our side as a method of winning the war against Al-Shabaab."

The US Department of State issued a travel warning on Tuesday (May 24) that Americans should avoid traveling to Somalia because of the continued threat of the al-Qaeda-linked militant group al-Shabaab and the risks of kidnapping in the country.

198 Somali police graduated in Kismayo on Monday (May 23) after an intensive three-month course organized by the police component of AMISOM covering basic principles of policing, arrest of suspects and public order management as well as  human rights law. They are the first of 600 officers from Jubaland being trained.

South Sudan

Cabinet Affairs Minister, Martin Elia Lomuro, said in an interview on Sunday (May 22) that the Transitional Government of National Unity Council of Ministers has agreed to set up a technical committee to review boundaries and make recommendations as a basis for discussions on how to move forward and harmonize opinions and views about the number of states. The Joint Monitoring and Evaluation said earlier that it was not going to include the 28 states in the implementation of the peace process.

South Sudan and Sudan have agreed to resume the meetings of their Joint Political and Security Committee (JPSC) on June 6 in Khartoum. In March 2013the two countries signed an implementation matrix for cooperation agreements covering oil, citizenship rights, security issues, banking and border trade that had been agreed six months earlier. A December 2015 meeting of the JPSC was postponed due to South Sudan security reasons.


The Egyptian-Sudanese Higher Committee started a two-day meeting at the level of under-secretaries of ministries and experts in Khartoum on Wednesday (May 25) to discuss a number of joint issues including the disputed Halayeb triangle. The Ministerial and Presidential meetings will be held in Cairo at a later date.

Sudan and China signed a framework agreement on Monday (May 23) to develop peaceful uses of nuclear energy in Sudan, following the first meeting of the China-Sudan Joint Energy Cooperation Commission in Khartoum. Sudan and China reached an agreement to build a research nuclear reactor with the approval of the International Atomic Energy Agency four years ago. The first nuclear plant is expected to be built in 2020.

A tripartite committee of Sudan, African Union and United Nations resumed discussions over an exit strategy for the Darfur joint UN/AU peacekeeping operation (UNAMID) in Khartoum on Monday (May 23). The meeting discussed and adopted a report on the security and humanitarian situations by the tripartite work team. Last week, the Sudanese government renewed its call for the withdrawal of UNAMID from Darfur, saying that the security situation there was now stable after defeating the rebels and curbing tribal violence.