UNSG Kofi Annan-Call a Spade a Spade
By: Sophia Tesfamariam
January 7, 2004

I found the latest progress report on Eritrea and Ethiopia by UN Secretary General Kofi Annan to the Security Council to be scandalously contradictory to what the Border Commission reported in its statement, which was annexed, to the UNSG report. Contrary to what Mr. Kofi Annan stated in his report the present impasse is not a product of the absence of dialogue but rather, Ethiopia's refusal to accept the final and binding EEBC decision and the continuous reluctance of the international community, including the UN, to implement its own resolutions and decisions.

Mr. Kofi Annan, what is missing is not dialogue, but Ethiopia 's compliance with agreements it has signed and swift implementation of UN resolutions and decisions. The Algiers Agreement spells out clearly what must be done by the UN Security Council if any of the two parties refuse to comply. Article 14 of the Cessation of Hostilities Agreement adapted and endorsed by the United Nations Security Council states:

"…the OAU and the UN Commit themselves to guarantee the respect for this commitment of the parties. This guarantee shall be comprised of measures to be taken by the international community should one or both parties violate this commitment, including appropriate measures to be taken under Chapter 7 of the Charter of the United Nations by the Security Council".

Mr. Kofi Annan, don't beat around the bush and don't try to appease the apartheid regime in Ethiopia . Stop using the terms “both parties”, “both leaders”, “both countries” etc. when you clearly know that it is Ethiopia that has rejected the final and binding EEBC decision. It is about time that you called a spade a spade and take appropriate punitive measures against the culprit i.e. Ethiopia . When the issue is justice, there can be no dialogue with those who are defying justice.

The rule of law must prevail over the rule of the jungle.