Addis Ababa praises Sudan for repatriating Ethiopian rebels

Source: Sudan Tribune

August 13, 2015 (ADDIS ABABA) – The Ethiopian security service on Sunday announced the return of a dissident Ethiopian general to the country with 800 rebel fighters, and praised the neighbouring Sudan for securing their repatriation to the country.

The official Ethiopian TV broadcast a statement welcoming the return of the Tigray People’s Democratic Movement (TPDM) fighters from Eritrea and described the move as a “Great Victory”.

The statement further said the return of TPDM leader General Mola Asgedom comes as results of secret contacts conducted by the Ethiopian intelligence and security service with him since a year ago.

The Ethiopian TV praised “the Sudanese government’s role in resolving the crisis,” describing it as a “historical role that the people and the Government of Ethiopia will never forget”.

It stressed that the Sudanese forces “strongly responded” to attempts by the Eritrean authorities to hunt Asdedom’s fighters inside the Sudanese territory, adding the latter received all the needed logistical and humanitarian support from the Sudan Armed Forces.

Ethiopian and Eritrea trade accusations of support to rebel groups from both sides since the eruption of a bloody war between 1998 and 2000 over border disputes. However, the Sudanese government was keen to remain at equal distance from both sides.

On Saturday, a Sudanese security official disclosed that the Gen Asgedom and his troops arrived into the Sudanese town of Hamdait at the border triangle between Eritrea, Ethiopia and Sudan on Friday evening after clashes with the Eritrean army on the same day in Eritrean city of Omhajer.

The Sudanese official went on to say that Asgedom and 683 of his forces handed over their weapons to the Sudanese authorities.

He further pointed that the Sudanese army successfully prevented the escalation of clashes between Asgedom’s forces and the Eritrean army and evacuated the Ethiopian fighters to Wad al-Hilu town in Kassala State while their leaders were transferred to unspecified areas inside Sudan.

The Eritrean government did not react to these reports till Sunday evening.

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