It was not that long since the Nobel laureate, Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed saved Sudan from the verge of failing as a state. Through his support to pro-democracy protesters all over Sudan, not only he helped the establishment of a government but also kept the huge country and the greater Horn of Africa remain stable.
However, despite the remarkable public diplomacy, economic and political advances in relations between our two countries, recent developments speak to an emerging fragile situation across our borders.
Sudanese army attacked Ethiopians, demolished houses, farms, businesses and displaced people. This turn of events has a actually developed gradually with Sudan's controversial adherence to Egypt's stance over the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam on Abby river. The Sudanese high ranking army officials have for a number of times shuttled carrying destructive intentions between Khartoum and Cairo.
Through the secret Egyptian intelligence apparatus missions, they tried to lure South Sudan and the Arab League to cooperate with their evil agenda of destabilizing Ethiopia.
It is evident that Egypt salivated much to fulfill its wish of seeing a weak and internally divided government in Ethiopia. In order to achieve its purpose, it has worked hard to hijack the rule of law enforcement mission in Tigry region and misguide the international diplomatic community's picture about what was an internal sovereign affair.
Regardless of Ethiopia's high magnitude losses from the recent border clashes with Sudan, Prime Minster Abiy Ahmed in a great gesture of friendship and solidarity, has chosen to handle the matter with utmost wisdom and care.
It, however, is not being interpreted by some Sudanese officials positively who sounded to officially monger war rhetoric to their public.
Ethiopia has always showed its commitment and unwavering support to the prevalence of peace, stability, human dignity, prosperity and building a political culture of democracy in the greater Horn region. However, Sudan's territorial aggression is not by any means acceptable and the Ethiopian forces should once and for all remove Egyptian mercenaries who attacked our territorial sovereignty and normalize Ethiopia-Sudan relations.
Differences can only be solved through dialogue. Military options can only aggravate the conflict and will have dire consequences to our people. Silencing the guns and sitting on the round table is the only option left for whoever in Sudan is playing with fire in Ethiopia.
Ethiopia is not fragmented. Ethiopia is on the path to greater prosperity and economic revival. The way forward for people and governments of Ethiopia and Sudan is to dwell and cooperate on common agenda of peace and development.
Sudanese people should not forget the fact that they have no closer friends than Ethiopians as proved in their pro-democracy rally and the formation of the transition government.
The actions of the Sudanese forces are a complete violation of international norms and covenants. Sudanese people should urge their government to withdraw its forces from Ethiopian territory and any failure to urgently do so will only drag Sudan into instability and our brothers and sisters in untold misery.
The massacre of poor and subsistence Ethiopian farmers and looting their properties, would by no means justify victory. Ethiopia's retaliatory military response will only harm relations and our long history of friendship. So the only option left for Sudanese armies now is to apologize, compensate for losses and leave Ethiopian territory or perish and reopen a new page of hostility and suffering.
Samuel Tefera (PhD) is an Assistant Professor at the Center for African and Asian Studies, College of Social Sciences, Addis Ababa University
He can be reached through: email@example.com
The Ethiopian herald January 5/2021