By Haile Abraham,
As April 13th approaches, Eritreans and peace-loving people around the world will be reminded once again of a failed international court verdict that the US and its Western allies continue to ignore despite the immense suffering it is causing in the Horn of Africa.
It is to be recalled that after a 2-year bloody border conflict, Ethiopia and Eritrean signed a peace agreement in Algiers in December 2000 to end the conflict and also to establish a boundary commission with a mandate to delimit and demarcate the international boundary lines between the two countries.
The Algiers Agreement, even though it was signed by both countries under the pressure from the International Community, it was pretty much staged carefully to give the impression that Ethiopia would have the upper hand in all parts of the negotiations, including the establishment and mandate of the EEBC (Eritrea Ethiopia Boundary Commission).
This fake arrangement, henceforth, allowed Ethiopia to boast openly that it signed the agreement because, it “had broken Eritrea’s back” and also successfully “destroyed more than three fourth of the Eritrean army.” In reality however, Ethiopia signed the agreement when its dreams and its foolish ambitions of capturing Assab was crippled after its invading army got totally annihilated in the hot dessert the day the agreement was signed.
However, as it was staged by the International Community, Ethiopia was allowed to dictate the peace agreement negotiations and Eritrea went along for the sake of peace and justice. According to Dr. M. Filli’s article “Ethiopia defies international verdict now faces international wrath” written on October 11, 2003, he stated, “The terms of the nature (independent and international) and composition of the EEBC, its modus operandi, and the legal basis for its judgment was all dictated by Ethiopia.”
Dr. M. Filli further pointed out the following 5 points to support his analysis:
– Ethiopia wanted that the verdict of the EEBC be final and binding, with no right to appeal, it got it.
– Ethiopia wanted to have a guarantee that the EEBC ruling will be implemented, wherever the chips may fall, it got it: US, UN, EU, AU and Algeria committed and obliged themselves to implement the EEBC verdict even by invoking chapter VII of the UN Charter (use of force).
– Ethiopia wanted that only colonial treaties of 1900, 1902, 1908, and applicable international law constitute the basis for adjudicating the conflict. It got it.
– Ethiopia wanted that the EEBC be precluded from making any judgment based on “ex aequo et bono”, Ethiopia got it.
– Ethiopia wanted that both Eritrea and Ethiopia commit and oblige themselves to only accept and abide by the verdict of the EEBC, wherever the chips may fall, and sign the Algiers Agreement in the presence of international witnesses: It got it, too.
And more so, Ethiopia even dictated the date of the pronouncement of the verdict, which was postponed twice only upon Ethiopia’s request. And as soon as the verdict was handed and before the ink even dried, the Ethiopian Foreign Minister, Seium Mesfin, went on a crazy premature tantrum in a staged press conference to announce to the world the following:
“Today sanity has won over insanity…the rule of law has prevailed over the rule of the jungle…this decision has rejected any attempt by Eritrea to get award for its aggression…this decision was fair and legal…Badme and its surrounding, which Eritrea invaded and occupied in May 1998 on the basis of its false claims has now been decided by the Commission that Badme and its surroundings belong to Ethiopia…”
It is not quite clear if the Ethiopian FM and its illiterate bosses had read or understood the entire document, but once they realized that the rule of law was not in their favor and that Badme was awarded to Eritrea, the Woyane junta hit the insanity panic button. The way they acted and the way they behave after that is now in the history books, and that whole scenario also defined the nature and the fabric of the Woyne mentality.
Fearing a growing internal backlash due the loss of Badme, the Woyane regime begged US officials to serve all US interests in the region in return of their rejection of the international court verdict. Sadly, the US, the self-proclaimed “moral authority” of the world and one of the “guarantors” of the Algiers peace agreement, decided to babysit Ethiopia in order to carry out its failed and misguided foreign policy in the Horn of Africa.
Thus, 13 years after Ethiopia rejected the international court verdict, with a tacit support from the US Administration, the rule of law is still ignored; Ethiopia is still on Eritrea’s sovereign territory; the two illegal UN sanctions imposed on Eritrea are still in place; and most of all, the US and its Western allies are allowing the “no war no peace” stance to prevail between Ethiopia and Eritrea, essentially holding Eritrea a hostage from developing and advancing.
So, one might ask, why do the US and its Western allies side with Ethiopia and continue their one-sided illegal witch hunt against Eritrea for the last 13 years? Why did they deiced to take the high-road of being unfair and unjust towards Eritrea when all they have to do was respect the rule of law and stop babysitting Ethiopia?
Well, the simple answer to this could have taken only 13 seconds and certainly not 13 years. At some point however, we remain optimistic that sanity will win over insanity; the rule of the law will prevail over the rule of the jungle; and Ethiopia will vacate Eritrean sovereign territories so this ugly chapter can be closed forever.
On this occasion, I would like to congratulate the heroic act of heroism of our 25 bikers, who are riding from Sweden to Geneva UN Headquarter to deliver a message of peace and justice on April 13th.