Isaias Afwerki decides to send peace delegation to Addis Ababa

Eritrea’s President Isaias Afwerki has announced today that he will send a delegation to Addis Ababa to hold talks with the Ethiopian government, according to Information Minister Yemane Gebremeskel.

After waging an absolutely senseless war costing the lives of tens of thousands of young people, the regimes in Addis Ababa and Asmara have been locked in a standoff for the past 18 years even though they signed a peace treaty. The standoff was caused by the previous Ethiopian prime ministers, Meles Zenawi and Hailemariam Desalegn, who refused to honor the treaty.

Both regimes used the ensuing tense relations to help them prolong their grip on power by jailing opposition politicians, journalists, and dissidents, on the pretext of a national emergency.

Ethiopia’s new leader, Abiy Ahmed, wants to change that. He started out by releasing thousands of political prisoners. Last week, he told the Asmara regime that he will honor the Algiers Treaty. After several days of silence regarding Prime Minister Abiy’s peace overture, Eritrea’s president has responded.

It would be a great token of peace if President Isaias releases Ethiopian prisoners, prominent among them, Col. Tadesse Muluneh and Col. Bezabeh Petros.

A tweet by Eritrea’s Minister of Information: