OEA asks U.S. to force Ethiopia To implement boundary ruling
November 18, 2005
In a recent letter to U.S. Secretary Condoleezza Rice, the Organization of
Eritrean Americans (OEA) has once again asked Washington to force Ethiopia to
implement a 2002 ruling by an independent international boundary commission
immediately and without any conditions. Of the four guarantors of the 2000 Peace
Agreement between Eritrea and Ethiopia that created the boundary commission,
the U.S. “is the only power capable of bringing a peaceful closure to this murderous
conflict” the OEA said.
Tension on the border between the two countries is on the rise because of Ethiopia’s continued occupation of internationally-recognized Eritrean land and its ongoing military build-up.
Here below is the full text of the letter:
November 3, 2005
The Honorable Condoleezza Rice
Secretary, U.S. Department of State
2201 C Street, NW
Washington, D.C. 20520
Dear Secretary Rice,
We are writing once again to ask you to stop another potential bloodbath in Eritrea and Ethiopia before it is too late by enforcing the rule of international law. Not only does the U.S. have an obligation and responsibility to do so, but it is also the only power capable of bringing a peaceful closure to this murderous conflict.
We are Americans of Eritrean origin who care about the long-term interests of our adopted country, the US, and about the delivery of international justice to our country of origin, Eritrea.
If one examines the history of the Horn of Africa it is easy to see a pattern of systematic and repeated betrayals by the West. The justification for such a checkered history seems to lie on some ill-conceived, narrow-minded and misguided policies that serve some short-term interest of the West but ultimately perpetuate injustice and create cycles of conflict and war. In the long run, the interests of the US are harmed.
A case in point is the flawed geopolitical calculations that favored and privileged successive Ethiopian rulers over its smaller neighbor Eritrea. The actions or lack thereof by the US and the UN have defined the turmoil that has filled the better half of the 20th century. Had the US supported the aspirations of the Eritrean people, a destructive 30-year war that destroyed Eritrea and impoverished Ethiopia may have been averted.
Over the years, internal Ethiopian political dynamics have historically used Eritrea as a scapegoat and a rallying issue to create domestic coherence. The US has repeatedly allowed itself to be used in this game of victimizing Eritrea in an attempt to keep a tattered empire, Ethiopia, together. The US must learn from the errors of such misguided policies that seem to benefit neither the US nor the region.
Under the sponsorship of the US, the UN, EU and the AU, Ethiopia and Eritrea signed the Algiers Agreement in 2000. This was to usher a new era of peace and tranquility for the region and the beginning of a healthy partnership for the US. All of this has been shattered due to the refusal of Ethiopia to abide by the final and binding EEBC ruling. We are now at the verge of another war between the two countries. It is evident that Ethiopia's refusal to abide by the rule of law was hatched and nurtured in large part due to the quiescence, tacit encouragement and passive neutrality of the United States. This neutrality or quiescence is harmful, illegal and terribly unjust.
As the only super power, the US can make things happen. The US's clear and decisive policy in the Gaza, Lebanon, Ukraine and Liberia did make a positive difference. We are asking that our government stop appeasing Meles Zenawi and develop a clear, swift and fair policy that supports international rule of law with out any preconditions. In this way, the US will preserve peace in the region while protecting its long-term interests and it prestige as a super power.
We look forward to hearing from you.
Organization of Eritrean Americans (OEA)
For Immediate Release
November 17, 2005