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Djibouti/Ethiopia ‘diplomatic romance’ continues as President Omar Guelleh discusses relations with Abiy Ahmed

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The “diplomatic romance” between Ethiopia and its East African neighbours Djibouti appears to be growing stronger as President Ismail Omar Guelleh of Djibouti has held a bilateral meeting on regional issues of mutual concern with Ethiopia’s Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed in Adis Ababa.

The two presidents on Monday considered possibilities of strengthening multifaceted cooperation between the two countries.

Djibouti’s Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mahamoud Ali Youssouf whiling briefing newsmen in Addis Ababa revealed that the discussion was based on sustainable energy and trade relations between the two East Africa neighbours.

“We discussed energy, we discussed water how to promote trade through upgrading the performance of the logistics, the port, the road, you know Djibouti and Ethiopia have very integrated economies and sometimes we are also quoted as a role model. Today the visit of the President was really successful”

Both leaders were reported to have discussed the strengthening of economic ties in trade and agricultural investments, and the scale-up joint infrastructure development.

Ethiopian Prime Minister, Abiy Ahmed who has enjoyed warm relations with Djibouti since coming into office in April 2018 said “The ties between our two nations are historical and broad-based. It is not only neighborly ties but familial. President Ismail Guelleh and I are committed to capitalizing on existing foundations for mutual prosperity”,

“The security and the stability of Djibouti as well as the unity and the stability of Ethiopia is fundamental to both countries’ joint interests and the two leaders also exchanged on mutual cooperation on this field.” _Ahmed Shide, Minister of Finance of Ethiopia added.

Three weeks ago, the two countries at the 9th Ethio-Djibouti Defense Chiefs of Staff meeting held in Addis Ababa agreed to expand the cooperation developed between them, with priority in preventive strategies and operations to ensure security and peace on the common border.

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Congo DR electoral body, CENI, announces date of presidential election

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The electoral authorities in the Democratic Republic of Congo, Commission Electorale Nationale Independente (CENI) have announced dates for the next presidential election.

CENI on Saturday said the election will take place on December 20th next year.

The commission outlined several challenges, including the logistics of transporting ballot materials thousands of miles, health concerns about Ebola and COVID-19, and unrest that has forced hundreds of thousands to flee their homes.

The incumbent president, Felix Tshisekedi, who already expressed his intention to run again. He might be running against Martin Fayulu, who continues to claim that he won the 2018 election and was denied victory.

Terrorist activities, largely by a rebel group, M23 have drawn reactions from stakeholders in the East Africa region and global observers. The M23 is a rebel military group based in eastern areas of the DRC, mainly operating in the province of North Kivu.

According to the electoral authorities, insecurity remains the main challenge for the next elections.

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Congo DR rebel group, M23 wants direct talks with government. Will Kinshasa concede?

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The M23 rebel group, which has been at loggerheads with the government of the Democratic Republic of Congo has asked for a direct talk with the government.

The positions are days after the deadline for the declaration of a permanent truce between the worrying battles.

Leaders of Rwanda, Burundi, and Angola met this week in Luanda to find a solution to the conflict in eastern Congo, which has forced thousands to flee their homes.

But the M23 was not part of the discussions and found out about the statement on social media, its spokesperson said.

The spokesperson of the group, Lawrence Kanyuka, “thanked the regional leaders for their efforts to find a peaceful solution to the current conflict.”

“Give us direct negotiations with the government to resolve the root causes of conflict that are producing all these wars here,” he said. M23 leader Bertrand Bisimwa also issued a statement to the same effect.

Meanwhile, Congo DR’s foreign minister Christophe Lutundula said: “It won’t happen. I can reassure you on behalf of the government and the President of the Republic.”

The M23 is a rebel military group based in eastern areas of the DRC, mainly operating in the province of North Kivu.

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