News Highlights: Eritrea-Ethiopia relations 20 years after border war, UNSC renews sanctions South Sudan, new IOM data

In this week’s news highlights: Time to renew Ethiopian-Eritrean relations; UN Security Council extends sanctions to South Sudan; US reviews assistance programs in South Sudan; Ethiopians face hardships on the way to Saudi Arabia; New IOM reports migrants arrivals to Europe for 2018; A Nigerian man’s story: trying to reach Europe; internal news: how will the new EU data regulations affect the news highlights list?

Greater Horn of Africa

Eritrea: It is high time Eritrean-Ethiopian conflict ended, sources advise
20 years have passed since the eruption of the 1998-2000 war between Ethiopia and Eritrea- a war that happened due to the border conflict, killing many thousands and affecting the social fabric and economy of the two countries. Now, many are wondering if the two parties are ready for reconciliation and advise that long term stability of the Horn of Africa region is of general interest to help them have a peaceful relation, moving beyond their “senseless war”.

South Sudan:UNSC renews sanctions on South Sudan
The United Nations Security Council adopted yesterday, 9 May, a resolution that allows to renew sanctions against South Sudan. Sanctions include an assets freeze and travel bans of individuals “responsible for or complicit in” threatening peace and stability in the country. They further decided to extend the mandate of the Panel of Experts overseeing the sanctions for another 13 months.

South Sudan: White House announces review of assistance programs in South Sudan
Frustrated with the lack of progress in reaching a peace agreement, the White House announced they will review assistance programs to South Sudan. In a statement, they said they must ensure their shared efforts reflect the urgency of the situation, which they have criticized in the past at the Security Council, saying that the South Sudanese leaders are failing their people.

Ethiopia: Ethiopians’ experiences on their way to Yemen
It is estimated that every day around 200 Ethiopians are entering neighboring Djibouti undercover hoping to reach Yemen and, eventually, Saudi Arabia. Those who arrive in Yemen, reports read, face a number of dangers. UNHCR has reported physical and sexual abuse, torture, extortion, abduction, and forced labour by smugglers and criminal networks. “Only a very small minority make it to Saudi Arabia without facing at least one incident of abuse,” says Danielle Botti of the regional mixed migration secretariat (RMMS), which monitors movements between the Horn of Africa and Yemen.


IOM reports on numbers of Mediterranean migrant arrivals for 2018
The International Organisation on Migration (IOM) latest report reads that ” 23,715 migrants and refugees entered Europe by sea through the first 125 days of 2018, with about 39 per cent arriving both in Italy and Greece, with the remainder arriving in Spain (20%).” The report also talks about the number of people who died, rescue operations and they emphasized the need to have an adequate reception system on shore that adds to the efforts of authorities’ capacity at sea. The IOM’s 2018 first quarter overview for migrant arrivals to the EU shows that the highest number of arrivals in Italy, 25%, comes from Eritrea.

Despair of migrants trying to reach Europe
Nigerian refugee Evans Williams describes how he sold all his property to reach Europe, how he was instead put in a detention centre in Libya and now he is back home. He further describes how he had met a Gambian in Libya who asked him to tell his family he is alive; when Williams did so, the parents answered “so what, he’s not made it to Europe then?”.

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