Ethiopia accused of attack near border, killing Sudanese soldiers


According to a statement by Sudan’s military, several of its soldiers were killed while repulsing an attack by “Ethiopian army forces and militias…who sought to intimidate and spoil the harvest.”

It further claimed that its forces ‘repulsed the attack’ and inflicted ‘heavy losses of life and equipment’ on the Ethiopian army and militias.

Addis Ababa has been silent on the issue, with battlefront reporting banned since friday.

Attacks in the disputed region tend to escalate during harvest time, often by Ethiopian militias. The disputed region has been under Sudan for a little over a decade, since Ethiopia ceded its claim on the condition that Ethiopian farmers be allowed to stay in their farms.

The news of renewed fighting will escalate tensions in an already fragile region, with protests in Sudan forcing the military’s hand after a coup, and Ethiopia’s federal government at war with Tigray, which borders Al Fashaqa.

CLICK HERE FOR OUR DOSSIER ON THE TIGRAY WAR VS. THE REGION

Sudan took advantage of the start of the Tigray War, after Amhara militias in the disputed region withdrew to join the battle to escalate the dispute.

In February, Khartoum claimed that Ethiopia’s northern neighbour Eritrea had also sent soldiers into the disputed region. At the time, both Asmara and Addis Ababa still denied claims by the TPLF that the former’s military was involved in the war.

The news comes just days after General Abdel Fattah Al-Burhan was forced to restore power to the country’s civilian prime minister by widespread anti-coup protests that have so far left more than 40 people dead.

The attack was launched against backdrop of an army and police purge in Sudan.

Eight Bechir-era generals retired yesterday, and Prime Minister Hamdok sacked two police chiefs.

Analysts suggest that while it has been reported as an Ethiopian attack, it is Sudan’s army that stands to gain the most in a fight with Ethiopia, helping shore up Al-Burhan’s position as ‘defender of the nation’; and that an already stretched Ethiopian army is unlikely to open a new front.

In Ethiopia, Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed left the capital to lead from the war front, as changing fortunes on the battlefield over the last few months have shifted to the TPLF’s advantage.

The Ethiopian military, engaged in a last ditch effort to fight back Tigrayan rebels from their advance on the capital, has not commented on the latest events in the Al Fashaqa region.

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Publish date : 2021-11-28 14:51:57

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