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Ethiopian premier in Sudan for joint committee meetings

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December 3, 2013 (KHARTOUM) - Ethiopia’s Prime Minister, Hailemariam Desalegn, has arrived in Khartoum on Tuesday at the head of a high level delegation to participate in the meetings of the Joint Sudanese- Ethiopian Higher Committee (JSEHC) which will witness the signing of 13 cooperation agreements between the two countries.

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Ethiopia’s Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn (C) and Sudan’s President Omar al-Bashir (R) react to traditional performers as Desalegn arrives at Khartoum airport December 3, 2013. (Photo Reuters/Mohamed Nureldin Abdallah)

Desalegn was received at Khartoum airport by president Omer Hassan Al-Bashir and several ministers and government officials, and dances performed by regional folklore groups.

He will inaugurate the power linkage network between Sudan and Ethiopia in Sudan’s eastern state of Gedarf and then visit Merowi dam in the northern state.

The Sudanese ambassador to Addis Ababa, Abdel-Rahman Sir Al-Khatim, announced that the JSEHC meetings reached an agreement to end disputes between farmers from two sides of the border over the ownership of agricultural land particularly in the Al-Fashaga area.

Bashir and Desalegn would sign 13 cooperation agreements at the end of the JSEHC meetings in economic, social, cultural, and political domains.

Sudan’s foreign minister, Ali Karti, in his address to the ministerial meetings on Tuesday predicted that Bashir and Desalegn would issue a decision to determine the date and place for fixing border signs.

He pointed that the joint technical committee for border demarcation conducted the necessary survey and developed the work plan and the projected budget.

Border clashes between farmers on land ownership has existed for a long time but never led to a major confrontation between the two armies.

In the same context, the Ethiopian foreign minister, Tedros Adhanom, underscored the importance of cooperation in border issues in order to eliminate causes of instability, pointing that joint committees achieved positive results in areas of peace, security, and information sharing between the two countries.

Sir Al-Khatim also said that border agreement aims to end border disputes and achieve social peace among citizens of both countries, stressing that the agreement has automatically resolved the dispute over Al-Fashaga and other areas to allow peaceful coexistence.

The two leaders will sign at the end of the JSEHC meetings on Wednesday agreements and Memorandums of Understanding (MOU).

The agreements include a framework agreement on trade, economy and technical cooperation, and cooperation agreements on legal assistance in criminal issues, aviation services ,local and decentralized governance, passenger services, security issues, and railways.

The MOUs include cooperation in areas of combating human trafficking, woman, youth, and children, banking, customs as well as the executive programs on youth and general education.

(ST)

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