March 16, 2012
ADDIS ABABA (Reuters) – Eritrea urged the United Nations to take action against Ethiopia on Friday for an attack inside its territory which the government in Asmara branded provocative.
The Red Sea state said it would not be “entrapped” by the military incursion, signalling its reluctance to be sucked back into armed conflict with its bitter foe.
Ethiopia announced on Thursday its troops raided three military bases in Eritrea which it said were used by Ethiopian rebels.
The assaults were the first on Eritrean soil that Addis Ababa has admitted to since the end of a 1998-2000 war that killed 70,000 people. Eritrea claims there have been others.
“The objective of the attack … is to divert attention from the central issue of the regime’s flagrant violation of international law and illegal occupation of sovereign Eritrean territories,” Eritrea’s Foreign Ministry said in a statement.
“Eritrea … will not be entrapped by such deceitful ploys that are aimed at derailing and eclipsing the underlying fundamental issues.”
A vicious row over the position of Eritrea and Ethiopia’s shared border was not resolved at the end of the war.
The Hague-based Eritrea-Ethiopia Boundary Commission ruled in 2002 that the border village of Badme belonged to Eritrea.
However, the village remains in Ethiopia, Washington’s main ally in the volatile Horn of Africa.
“It is patently clear that the Ethiopian regime could not have unleashed such a flagrant act of aggression with such audacity without the protection and succour of the United States in the Security Council,” Eritrean Foreign Minister Osman Saleh said in a letter to the U.N. Security Council seen by Reuters.
“Eritrea urges, for the umpteenth time, the U.N. Security Council to shoulder its legal and moral responsibilities and to take appropriate measures to rectify acts of aggression against Eritrea’s sovereign territories.”
Eritrea gave no further details on what action it hoped for.
Source Reuters By Aaron Maasho
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