March 30, 2021
Image: Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc.
By Sudan Tribune
GADAREF – Sudanese forces repulsed Ethiopian militias that crossed the borderline near an area located between Ethiopia and the Sudanese states of Gadaref and Sennar to change the position of the border markers between the two countries, on Monday.
Military sources told the Sudan Tribune, a joint force of the army and Reserve Forces in the 2d and 17th divisions clashed with about 200 Ethiopian militiamen for about 4 hours on Monday.
Two people were killed, one from each side added the source.
The Ethiopian force sought to expand the border dispute to new border areas
as they penetrated into the Sudanese territory in the Dinder Reserve and Basinda locality at the border between the states of Gadaref and Sennar.
The military official who is not authorized to speak to the media said that the Ethiopian force wanted to place new border markers and hide the existing markers, but the Sudanese troops forced the assailants to flee back into Ethiopia.
Ethiopia and Sudan share some 1600km common border which was demarcated through several treaties, during the colonial period between Britain and Italy after the independence between Sudan and Ethiopia.
Contrary to Al-Fashaga which is located north, the border markers are posed in the area attacked which is located in the southern part of the common boundary.
Border tensions have gradually increased between the two countries when the Sudanese army started to drive back Ethiopian militiamen from the fertile Al-Fashaga area in April 2020.
In November 2020, the army massively deployed troops in the area and expelled the Ethiopian farmers and their militiamen from the Sudanese territory.
Last January, Sudan said that its forces recovered about 90% of its territory in the Al-Fashaga.
The government of Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed claims the ownership of Al-Fashaga and calls for talks to demarcate the area, after the withdrawal of the Sudanese army.
For its part, the transitional government in Khartoum rejects the claim pointing to the agreements of 1920 and 1972.
Also, Khartoum calls to pose the border markers before holding talks on how to allow Ethiopian farmers to cultivate the area as foreign investors working side-by-side with the Sudanese farmers.
The UAE recently proposed to establish agriculture schemes in the area to cover its needs in food.