South Sudan’s President, Salva Kiir, and the Ethiopian Prime Minister, Abiy Ahmed met on Monday, 13th of March, to discuss bilateral relations between the two countries. The meet was held in Juda, the South Sudanese capital, where both the leaders stated that the meeting is primarily held to focus on bilateral matters with a regional dimension and to progress on the peace agreement.
It was also mentioned that Mr. Ahmed had a side-line meeting with the First Vice President, Machar to deliberate on challenges blocking the implementation of the peace agreement. They further discussed the matters that affect regional stability and ways to tackle that. Having a good history of bilateral relations, South Sudan and Ethiopia have focused on improving bilateral relations in terms of security.
The Heads of State also emphasized the building of relations through public diplomacy and connect more strongly the people of both nations. The western part of Gambella and the eastern part of South Sudan can serve as a business and trade route between the people of both countries. This will also specify the need to trade goods from Ethiopia, further strengthening relations.
Being the horn of Africa, the Ethiopian Prime Minister wants to focus on the development of infrastructure in the region including road links and energy for the people. The deputy minister also emphasized having big projects in the region, it serves the people in Sudan, South Sudan, Kenya, Uganda, and the region. It was also recognised that the efforts of the Ethiopian government to resolve the conflict in the region and ensure peace.
Both countries, signed a security pact in August of 2022, committing to promote bilateral relations on various issues that do not compromise safety and security. The deal was signed between key security and law enforcement officials of both countries. Some of the officials present were, South Sudan’s presidential adviser on security affairs, Tut Gatluak Manime, Minister of Interior, Mohamoud Solomon Age, Director General of the Internal Bureau of the National Security Services, and Director General for Immigration Passports and Nationality, Atem Marol Biar.