Horn of dilemmas toward a Transatlantic Partners to-do list for the Horn of Africa
Transatlantic Partners MUNICH SECURITY BRIEF
Tigrai Online 10/11/2022
The conflict network in the Horn of Africa has repercussions that transcend the region. European and American interests are being affected in profound ways. These interests include stability in the region, containing the terrorist presence in the Horn of Africa, keeping trade routes open along the Red Sea, and importantly, ensuring human security and development to create prospects for the region’s young population. In the short-term, transatlantic partners have a fundamental interest in preventing further political fragmentation of Ethiopia and its knock-on effects, including massive displacement of people.
The Horn of Africa is more than the conflicts that make international headlines. It is also a region of youth and aspirations. With an average age of less than 20, it is one of the youngest regions in the world. 49 Despite the ongoing conflicts, fragility, and grinding poverty, a young generation is rooting for democratic change – “a once-in-a-generation opportunity for democracy,” according to US Special Envoy Jeffrey Feltman. 50 Due to this significant youth potential, parts of the Horn of Africa have seen impressive economic growth. Before the civil war started, Ethiopia had been “Africa’s fastest-growing economy.” 51 Between 2010 and 2020, Ethiopian GDP grew in the double digits in five out of ten years. 52 Europe and the United States have expressed their readiness to invest in the region’s economies. For this purpose, they have used formats like the “Friends of Sudan” group 53 – a multilateral forum bringing together international organizations, Western governments, and the Arab Gulf states to “find solutions to Sudan’s economic misery.” 54 Some argue that steady foreign direct investments in the region already grant the transatlantic partners “more leverage in the Red Sea region than is often appreciated.”
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European Parliament resolution of 6 October 2022 on the recent humanitarian and human rights situation in Tigray, Ethiopia, notably that of children
Condemns the Eritrean forces’ invasion of Tigray; condemns the war crimes and human rights violations by Eritrean forces during the war in Ethiopia; urges the Eritrean government to withdraw its forces from Ethiopia with immediate and permanent effect and to ensure accountability for its war crimes.