King Salman with Ethiopia’s Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed, Eritrea’s President Isaias Afwerki and other dignitaries at the ceremony in Jeddah.
- Agreement signals end of two-decade-long standoff between the two Horn of Africa countries
- The accord is seen to have a stabilizing effect on international navigation in the Red Sea, especially as the two countries are overlooking/bordering Bab Al-Mandab, the Red Sea and the Horn of Africa
JEDDAH: Experts and analysts on Sunday welcomed the historic peace treaty signed in Jeddah between Ethiopia and Eritrea, and brokered by Saudi Arabia.
The president of the Arab Parliament, Dr. Mishaal bin Fahm Al-Salami, said the treaty was “evidence of the vital role Saudi Arabia, led by King Salman, plays in maintaining peace and security and promoting stability in the region and the world.”
Secretary-general of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, Dr. Yousef bin Ahmad Al-Othaimeen, said the Saudi leadership had “always been appreciated in the region as its help is often sought for containing dispute, bridging rifts, and promoting a convergence of views to achieve peace, safety, and stability. We have witnessed today the success of Saudi Arabia’s mediation.”
Dr. Mohammed bin Abdulkarim Al-Issa, secretary-general of the Muslim World League (MWL), said the “historic agreement reflects the great attention given by Saudi Arabia to the issues of world peace and its pivotal and important role in achieving it.”
Al-Issa pointed out that this historic event “has proven that the Kingdom, with its wise policy, is one of the most important pillars of world peace, and that it has become in the forefront of its international symbols.”
He stressed that the Kingdom will continue its wise efforts to spread human harmony and fight hatred, hostility and evil all over the world.
Shoura Council Speaker Sheikh Abdullah bin Mohammed bin Ibrahim Al-Asheikh said the treaty was “a positive step that will positively reflect on the people of the two countries and the region and will promote peace and development, for which this agreement paves the way.”
The agreement was “a solid foundation for strong relations in the region,” he said, and he hoped it would help the two countries put the past behind them and strengthen relations between them.
The Saudi political analyst Dr. Hamdan Al-Shehri said Saudi Arabia’s role in brokering the treaty “shows that Saudi Arabia’s foreign policy, which tends to resolve these international conflicts, is based on helping others, establishing security and stability and offering all that falls in the interest and prosperity of these countries.
“Being near the Horn of Africa, Saudi Arabia is aware of the importance of this sensitive area and the safety of international navigation across the Bab Al-Mandab strait.”
Countries such as Iran “exploit these conflicts to form and build militias within these countries and train and arm them. Saudi Arabia, on the other hand, plays a humane political and developmental role that helps African countries and their development.”
The political analyst and military expert Maj. Gen. Shami Al-Dhaheri said: “Eritrea is a country overlooking/bordering the Red Sea and opposite the Saudi border, specifically in front of the holy sites. It has a very important archipelago, which was a source of concern for most countries bordering the Red Sea.
“But the Kingdom has wisely established strong relations with Eritrea, and there have been several visits to the Kingdom by the Eritrean side contributing to the stability of the Dahlak Archipelago.”
Ethiopia was the second-largest country in Africa in terms of population, also overlooked the Red Sea and had a significant role in navigation stability, he said.
“The accord will play a major role in stabilizing international navigation in the Red Sea, especially as the two countries are overlooking/bordering Bab Al-Mandab, the Red Sea and the Horn of Africa. It will have a positive and significant impact, make the international shipping route safer and reduce maritime piracy and terrorist acts led by Iran as well as arms smuggling and human trafficking.”