3rd March 2024
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Ethiopia declines to attend IGAD summit due to ‘overlapping schedule’

Author: Koang Pal Chang | Published: Wednesday, January 17, 2024

IGAD heads of state and government (Photo: Abiy Ahmed Ali/X)

The Ethiopian Ministry of Foreign Affairs has announced its difficulty in attending the proposed IGAD extraordinary summit scheduled for 18 January 2024 due to an “overlapping schedule”.

In a letter addressed to Djibouti’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation and the IGAD Secretariat, the ministry cited a prior engagement and the short notice given for the summit as the reasons for its inability to participate.

The summit, called for by Djibouti’s President as the current chair of IGAD, aimed to address ongoing tensions between Ethiopia and Somalia.

This came following the signing of an Ethiopia-Somaliland Memorandum of Understanding, as well as the conflict in Sudan.

Despite being unable to attend, Ethiopia expressed its willingness to discuss alternative dates following the rules of procedure governing IGAD meetings.

The Sudanese government had previously announced its withdrawal from the summit, emphasizing the need for a face-to-face meeting between Sudan’s top military leaders to address pressing issues before broader discussions could occur.

It later severed ties with the regional body.

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