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Embaixada da Etiópia
Brasília, Brasil

September 09, 2016

News in Brief

Africa and the African Union

An extraordinary IGAD Summit is taking place in Mogadishu this weekend (September 10). Leaders from Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, South Sudan, Sudan and Uganda are expected to attend the summit focusing on the political and security progress made in Somalia, the country's upcoming 2016 elections, and the political crisis in South Sudan. Somalia's Foreign Minister, Abdisalam Omer ‘Hadliye' said this was the first time Mogadishu had hosted such a high-level summit for more than 30 years.

Tanzanian President John Magufuli hosted a special East African Community Summit on Thursday (September 8), attended by the Presidents of Kenya, Uganda, Rwanda and Burundi as well as South Sudan Salva Kiir, attending the ECA for the first time. The EAC Secretariat said it could now work to develop a detailed roadmap for integrating South Sudan into ongoing EAC projects and programs.

AU Commissioner for Peace and Security, Ambassador Smail Chergui says conflicts in Africa are growing in complexity and need intensified mediation efforts. Speaking at the start of a three-day seminar on the operationalization of the AU Mediation Support Unit in Addis Ababa on Wednesday (September 7), he said "The main objective of the unit was to ensure a systematic approach to mediation efforts and strengthen the work of current mediators and facilitators. Ambassador Chergui underlined the need to strengthen international collaboration and partnership to mobilize capacity mediation expertise.


May we wish all our readers and indeed all the peoples of Ethiopia our best wishes for peaceful and prosperous Ethiopian New Year 2009.

President Mulatu Teshome received the outgoing Japanese Ambassador to Ethiopia Ambassador Kazuhiro Suzuki on Wednesday (September 7). The President commended the role played by Ambassador Suzuki in upgrading the quality of Ethio-Japanese ties. He noted that Ethiopia continues to learn from Japan's economic development model in ways suited to its national conditions and needs.

Prime Minister Hailemariam Dessalegn met the United Nations Security Council delegation which had earlier visited South Sudan on Monday (September 5). They discussed the implementation of the peace agreement in South Sudan and the deployment of a Regional Protection Force, agreed by IGAD and authorized by the UN Security Council. Prime Minister Hailemariam said military chiefs from IGAD member states were finalizing preparations to deploy the force as soon as possible. 

Foreign Minister Dr. Tedros Adhanom, visiting, Sri Lanka to attend the World Health Organization South East Asia regional meeting,  met with Sri Lankan President Maithripala Sirisena on Wednesday (September 7). The two sides agreed to further strengthen economic relations.

Foreign Minister Dr. Tedros received the outgoing Japanese Ambassador to Ethiopia Ambassador Kazuhiro Suzuki on Thursday (September 8). Dr. Tedros, who commended the role played by Ambassador Kazuhiro Suzuki for continued growth in bilateral ties, noted the  expanded areas of cooperation between the two countries, the increase in Japanese investment, implementation of the Kaizen philosophy, and the successful visit of Prime Minister Abe.

Foreign Minister Dr. Tedros, meeting Christian Wright, Head of Business Development, East Africa, at Globeleq, underlined Ethiopia's commitments to support clean energy investment. He welcomed regional and global partnership for a low-carbon and green development business model. Mr. Wright said Globeleq was willing to invest in Ethiopia in alternative energy sources, including solar, wind, hydro and geothermal power.

The Second Ethio-Swiss Bilateral Political Consultation meeting was held in Addis Ababa on Monday this week (September 6). Delegations were led by the State Minister for Foreign Affairs of Switzerland, Yves Rossier and by State Minister Ambassador Taye Atske-Selassie. The two sides also signed an Air Service Agreement. 

State Minister Ambassador Taye Atske-Selassie met and held discussions with Ms. Ahunna Eziakonwa-Onochie, UN Resident Coordinator, on Monday (September 5). Ms. Eziakonwa-Onochie is also the UNDP Resident Representative and UN Humanitarian Coordinator. 

Members of the Swedish Parliament visiting Ethiopia met with members of the Foreign Affairs Standing Committee of the House of Peoples Representatives on Wednesday (September 7). The Chairperson of Ethiopia's Foreign Affairs Standing Committee, Tesfaye Daba, reaffirmed the commitment to further strengthen the longstanding bilateral ties and expand cooperation between Ethiopia and Sweden.

Tewolde Gebre Mariam, CEO of the Ethiopian Airlines, announced on Monday (September 5) that Ethiopian Airlines is set to add a thrice weekly flight to Guangzhou, capital of south China's Guangdong Province, as of October 8 this year in addition to its daily flight service.

A two-day regional experts meeting was held in Addis Ababa on Tuesday and Wednesday this week (September 6-7) with the aim of improving support services for persons with disabilities in Africa. The meeting was attended by experts, policy makers, board members of the African Disability Forum, human rights specialists from the African Union, the United Nations, academia, and civil society, considered initiatives to map out the way forward for inclusion and equal participation of persons with disabilities.


An Israeli appeals tribunal on Sunday (September 4) overruled the country's Interior Ministry and said that Eritreans who deserted from Eritrea's unending national service conscription were entitled to refugee status. In the past, the Interior Ministry has rejected virtually all applications by Eritreans for refugee status on the grounds that fleeing military service is not included in the definition of being "persecuted." Between 2009 and the end of 2015, 7,218 Eritrean nationals submitted asylum requests but only 8 were approved with 3,105 still waiting for a response.


Miraa growers have been expressing great concern over the Somali ban, announced on Monday (September 5)  on  miraa flights from Kenya to Somalia. Following bans by the Netherlands in 2012 and the UK in 2014, Somalia remains the main market for Kenyan miraa, a major crop in Meru county. The Governor of Meru County described the move as terrible. He hoped the Kenyan government would work to convince the Somali government to rescind the move.


President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud on Monday (September 5) signed the Political Parties Bill, legitimizing the operations of political parties for the first time in nearly fifty years. All politicians are now required to register with political parties by October 2018 in readiness for the 2020 one person one vote election. Political parties are required to have branches across the country and pay a $1,000 registration fee.

Somalia banned the flight of Kenya's miraa (khat) planes into Somali airspace as of Tuesday  (September 6). Speaking in Mogadishu on Monday, President Mohamud said the trade and consumption of miraa had a "devastating" impact on Somalis and must be banned.

The envoys of the United Nations, the Africa Union, the European Union, IGAD, Britain, the United States, Sweden and Italy issued a joint statement on Saturday (September 3), urging Somali political leaders to stick to the electoral calendar.  This week the National Leadership Forum is holding its final meeting before the elections to discuss outstanding issues.

Prime Minister Omar Abdirashid Sharmarke announced on Monday (September 5) that he would be a candidate in the Presidential election on October 30. His father,  Abdirashid Ali Sharmarke, was Prime Minister of Somalia from July 12, 1960 to June 14, 1964, and President June 10, 1967 until his assassination on October 15, 1969. Prime Minister Sharmarke said he would focus on security, good governance and economic development in Mogadishu and his presidency would chart a new course for Somalia following " four years of political instability which seriously hindered progress in the country."

South Sudan

On Sunday (September 4), President Salva Kiir finally accepted the deployment of the 4,000-strong Regional Protection Force, agreed by IGAD and authorized by the United Nations Security Council. His decision was announced  following a  meeting with a visiting delegation from the United Nations Security Council led by the US Permanent Representative to the UN, Samantha Power. 


Yemen Prime Minister, Ahmed bin Dagher arrived in Khartoum on Sunday (September 4) for a two-day visit, bringing a letter to President Omer al-Bashir from Yemeni President Abdrabuh Mansour Hadi. Sudan has several hundred troops deployed in the Saudi-led "Decisive Storm" coalition against the Houthi militants in Yemen. Sudan is also treating hundreds of Yemenis in Sudanese hospitals. Mr. Dagher was accompanied by Foreign Minister Abdel-Malik al-Mukhlafi, and held talks with Sudan's Foreign Minister Ibrahim Ghandour on bilateral ties, joint cooperation and latest developments in Yemen

The Public Authority for Geological Research said on Monday this week (September 5) that deposits of  iron, amounting to 52 billion tonnes have been discovered in Sudan. The sedimentary iron deposits were in Northern, River and Khartoum states, while volcanic iron deposits were found in eastern and western mountain areas as well as the Bauda desert in River Nile State. The Minister of Minerals, Ahmed Mohamed Sadiq al-Karouri, said it had set up a  committee to develop the iron industry and make concrete proposals to develop iron and other strategic minerals including copper, chromium and manganese.