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Egypt cannot tolerate potential recognition of Somaliland by Ethiopia

2 min

In the ever-evolving geopolitics of the Horn of Africa, a new development has arisen that demands our attention and concern.

The potential recognition of Somaliland by Ethiopia is a development that merits careful consideration and diplomatic engagement © Mena Today 

In the ever-evolving geopolitics of the Horn of Africa, a new development has arisen that demands our attention and concern.

Reports have emerged suggesting that Ethiopia is considering recognizing the self-declared Republic of Somaliland, a move that could have far-reaching consequences for the region.

Egypt, with its strategic interests in the Red Sea and the Horn of Africa, cannot afford to remain silent on this matter.

Ethiopia, a nation with a rich and complex history, plays a pivotal role in the region's stability and geopolitics. It is one of Africa's most populous countries and holds significant influence over the Nile River, which is a lifeline for numerous nations, including Egypt.

Its strategic importance cannot be overstated, and any shift in its foreign policy has ripple effects that reach far beyond its borders.

On the other hand, Somaliland, a self-declared republic since 1991, has been striving for international recognition.

While it has maintained relative stability compared to its southern neighbor, Somalia, it remains unrecognized by the international community.

Somaliland's aspirations for statehood have been fueled by its democratic governance, peace, and stability, which are commendable achievements in a region often plagued by conflict and instability.

However, the potential recognition of Somaliland by Ethiopia raises concerns on multiple fronts.

First and foremost, it could further complicate an already fragile regional balance. Ethiopia shares a long and porous border with Somalia, and Somalia's federal government considers Somaliland an integral part of its territory.

Recognition by Ethiopia could provoke tensions and potentially incite violence in the region, something the Horn of Africa can ill afford.

Additionally, the potential recognition could hinder ongoing diplomatic efforts to resolve the longstanding issues between Somalia and Somaliland.

These efforts, mediated by international partners, aim to find a peaceful and negotiated settlement that respects the interests of both parties. Ethiopia's unilateral recognition could undermine these efforts and complicate the path to a peaceful resolution.

For Egypt, the situation is of particular concern due to its dependence on the Nile River for water resources.

Ethiopia's control over the headwaters of the Nile and the construction of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) have been contentious issues.

Any change in Ethiopia's foreign policy could influence the dynamics of these negotiations and impact Egypt's water security.

In light of these complexities, it is crucial for all regional actors, including Egypt, to engage in diplomacy and dialogue to address the potential recognition of Somaliland by Ethiopia.

A coordinated, multilateral approach that involves all stakeholders is essential to safeguard regional stability and promote peaceful solutions to existing disputes.

Egypt, as a key player in the Horn of Africa and the wider region, should use its diplomatic channels to encourage Ethiopia to consider the broader implications of its actions.

Dialogue, compromise, and respect for the sovereignty of all nations in the region should be at the forefront of any diplomatic efforts.

By Yusuf Adnan

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