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Eritrea accuses Ethiopia of border attack, Ethiopia denies
Office of the Spokesperson
Ministry of Foreign Affairs
Addis Ababa, Ethiopia
December 27, 2007
The version of the story about an incident along Ethiopia Eritrea border recounted by Eritrea on December 26, 2007 is not based on what really took place. There was an incident, it is true. But the incident is of Eritrea's making which is being looked into. It is possible that it may have been a result of an accidental encounter between the reconnaissance missions of the two parties. The claim that there was an attack by Ethiopia is just pure fabrication.
In the first instance, why should Ethiopia wish to provoke Eritrea? Ethiopia has said time and again that it wants to settle the dispute with Eritrea right away and using whatever mechanism may be available. Ethiopia has said repeatedly that it is ready to recommit itself to the commitment that both parties have entered into under the Algiers agreements to refrain from the threat and use of force. Ethiopia has absolutely no claim over an inch of Eritrea's territory. Thus Ethiopia has no cause to pick a fight with Eritrea.
On the other hand, it is Eritrea that continues to claim with no justification that Ethiopia occupies sovereign Eritrean territory. This has been restated in a letter written by the Eritrean President on the 21st December 2007 and addressed to the President of the UN Security Council.
Therefore, if there is any party with the motive for conflict, it is Eritrea, not Ethiopia. That is why the latest claim by Eritrea has no basis and that it should be viewed as pure fabrication, or with, little doubt, an exaggerated and distorted account of an event that took place along the common border. It is our hope that the fabricated story is just a fabricated story which does not have a more sinister objective.
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