Any Red Sea Dialogue Initiative Should Include Ethiopia to Succeed: IFA

Any Red Sea Dialogue Initiative Should Include Ethiopia to Succeed: IFA
Any Red Sea Dialogue Initiative Should Include Ethiopia to Succeed: IFA

Africa-Press – Ethiopia. Any dialogue initiative related with the Red Sea security architecture that excludes and isolates Ethiopia cannot be successful, according to the Institute of Foreign Affairs (IFA).

The above remark was made by the Institute of Foreign Affairs Executive Director Jafar Bedru at the Second Red Sea Dialogue held in Addis Ababa today.

In his opening address, the executive director said governance related to the Red Sea won’t bear fruit unless it includes Ethiopia.

“We strongly believe that such conferences, dialogue and initiatives related with the Red Sea security cannot be successful by excluding and isolating Ethiopia.”

According to him, the Red Sea provides important opportunities for trade, economic growth and access to resources such as fisheries and other natural resources, including oil.

Moreover, the Red Sea is an essential trade route and a significant water body not only to the countries within the region but also to the states beyond the region.

However, the critical importance of the Red Sea facing security challenges related to geopolitical shifts demands a serious engagement of all stakeholders.

Given the recent complex security challenges, Jafar urged all states to carefully craft the mechanisms to be translated into actions to ensure shared security architecture in the Red Sea and the surrounding areas.

Noting the importance of Ethiopia’s involvement in the Red Sea governance, the executive director underlined that regional and continental institutions have to also reflect the interest of Ethiopia.

Jafar noted that Ethiopia’s proximity to the Red Sea, its economy and demographic size is the biggest from many of the states in the region and this makes Ethiopia a significant player in the Red Sea region.

Besides, Ethiopia used to be a major littoral state of the water body and the country is seeking to become an important player in this strategic trade route, he pointed out.

Office of the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Eshete Tilahun said on his part that inclusive governance and cooperation among countries across the Red Sea is pivotal to ensure maritime security and sustainable development.

“The future prosperity of the Red Sea region depends on our cooperation by fostering mutual respect. We can navigate the complex security and development challenges by ensuring durable peace for the next generation.”

US-Somalia Business Council Chairman, Idd Bedel Mohammed stressed the need for cooperation among countries around the Red Sea, particularly Ethiopia, Somalia, Eritrea, and Djibouti for mutual development.

The Second Red Sea Dialogue held under the theme: “Regional Consultative Forum on Red Sea Security Dynamics: The Need for Dialogue and Cooperation at a Time of Global Geopolitical Shifts” was attended by think tanks, diplomats and experts of geopolitics from around the Middle East, the Horn of Africa and the world.

Last year, the Institute of Foreign Affairs had also organized a similar forum on the Red Sea that helped to produce important policy recommendations.

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