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August 20, 2008

Eritrea-Ethiopia Peace Mission is Abandoned by U.N.

The eight year peace keeping mission that the U.N. has conducted between Eritrea and Ethiopia is over. The U.N. had a unanimous vote Wednesday to end the mission. U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon warned that this could lead to a new war in the Horn of Africa.

The mission has become impossible to navigate the mission to oversea the 15 mile wide, 620 mile long buffer zone between the two nations. Council members and other diplomats all thought the withdrawal of troops was necessary. Thursday the entire mission will be terminated, leaving the two countries to keep peace on their own.

The mission was terminated because Eritrea were continuously limiting peace keepers’ movements. Night patrols, supply routes and diesel fuel were all restricted. The Ethiopians refused to let an independent boundary commission’s 202 decision to give the town of Badme to Eritrea. So, with those issues going on, the U.N. believes that there is no reason for them to be involved in the conflict any longer.

This feud has been going on since Eritrea got their independence in 1993. A 30 year guerrilla war was fought for this independence to occur. In 2000 a peace agreement was entered by the U.N. and the 2 1/2 year border war was halted. Belgium, a country very familiar with Africa from their days of colonial rule, drafted a resolution. Ethiopia was called on to respect the border and the council said that it regretted Eritrea’s obstructions. Both countries were called on to refrain from causing any problems. Basically they were asked to remain civil. Something that most feuding nations can not seem to do.

Over the past few months gun fire has been exchanged between troops on both sides. This peace keeping mission was 113 billion dollars a year. All of that money and effort only to have these two countries continue to feud with one another.

Will there be another war in the world? Unfortunately, that seems like a real possibility at this time. When will people learn that this senseless killing of one another over silly land disputes just makes the world a worse place? The U.N. is smart to pull out their troops now. There is no reason to put more lives in danger when the people in Eritrea and Ethiopia are not interested in having peace. The world will be watching this area of the world with a cautious eye. War in this region would not be good.

As the Middle East starts to settle down a little bit, another part of the world is starting to become agitated. It seems that after all of these years of the peace keepers in the regions and all of the years since the war that took place. However, over the years the two countries have been moving towards running the U.N out. In 2005 Eritrea banned U.N helicopter flights within their airspace. This of course, hindered the agencies ability to do their job. Now the last of the peace keepers will be moved out of the area within the next few days. Chaos may ensue.

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