Executive Intelligence Review


Somalia’s President on State Visit to Eritrea, as Horn of Africa Gains in Peace and Development

July 30, 2018 (EIRNS)—Somalia President Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed “Farmaajo” has completed an official three-day visit to Eritrea at the invitation of Eritrean President Isaias Afwerki, which began July 28. The visit is part of an extraordinary sweep of diplomatic activity among the leaders of Ethiopia, Eritrea, Djibouti, and Somalia, following Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s ascent to power in April. The aim of the leaders is to open a path to economic integration through the development of connective infrastructure and exploiting the complementary aspects of their economies. The developments are taking place in the benevolent shadow of China’s Belt and Road Initiative, in which all four countries are eager participants.

President Afwerki’s invitation to his Somalian neighbor was the first to any Somali President, and follows the June normalization of relations between Eritrea and Ethiopia, for 20 years military adversaries, now economic and political partners. Prior to this invitation, Eritrea and Somalia had had strained relations, with no diplomatic ties for almost 15 years.

Speaking at a banquet in honor of Somali President Farmaajo, President Afwerki praised the three countries which have overcome monstrous subversion:

“The people of Eritrea have demonstrated exceptional resilience to challenge and frustrate all forms of subversion directed at them. They have prevailed in spite of the transgressions and pressures to which they were subjected without let-up. The people of Ethiopia have triumphed over the politics of ethnic polarization and foreign subservience. They are marching forward at a rapid pace for the crystallization and consolidation of a correct national and regional policy framework. There is no doubt whatsoever that the people of Somalia will, as ever, be fellow travelers with the peoples of Ethiopia and Eritrea.”

Their wide-ranging discussion included development of bilateral relations. Both Presidents toured Eritrean development projects. They signed a joint communiqué pledge to “forge intimate political, economic, social, cultural as well as defense and security cooperation.” The two agreed to

“establish diplomatic relations and exchange ambassadors, promote bilateral trade and investment, as well as educational and cultural exchanges.”

And to “work in unison to foster regional peace, stability and economic integration.”