Addis Ababa, January 26/2024-All parties should encourage the Ethio-Somaliland MoU as it benefits both sides and Ethiopia’s only motive is development, Ethiopia’s Ambassador to Israel told ENA.

According to Ambassador Tesfaye Yetayeh, Ethiopia’s basic intention in securing access to the sea is economic, and ensuring mutual benefits for the region and beyond.

He stressed that the recent Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) will bring about regional economic integration.

Although Ethiopia is endowed with many resources, it unfortunately is landlocked and needs access to the sea for the over 120 million plus population.

Moreover, the deal benefits people of both nations and no one is going to be negatively affected due to the endeavor, the ambassador elaborated.

“Ethiopia’s only motive is development, getting rid of abject poverty and ensuring prosperity. But when we are prospering we are not going to affect or damage other people. We are saying always, let us mutually benefit from what nature has given us,” Ambassador Tesfaye underscored.

Yet, we have to clarify our intentions because others may take it out of its context and say the agreement endangers the sovereignty and territorial integrity of other countries.

This “is a good endeavor that will create a lot of job opportunities and create another economic dynamism. So, it is people at the end of the day who will benefit. I think it will enhance the already started economic integration with our neighboring countries,” he noted.

Ambassador Tesfaye pointed out that it is through infrastructure that the economy and people are integrated where there are free movements of goods and services.

Ethiopia’s Ambassador to South Sudan, Nebil Mahdi said also that the basic intention of Ethiopia is economic and having access to the sea. Ethiopia doesn’t have any hidden agenda of challenging the territorial integrity of any of it neighbors basically, he added.

Historically, Ethiopia had sea access for last thousands of years, but lost access to the sea some 30 years ago.

Because of this Ethiopia has the historical and economic rights to have access to the sea, which also complies with international laws that enable landlocked countries to access sea, Ambassador Nebil stated.

“Ethiopia’s intention is to settle this issue peacefully and to contribute to regional prosperity. This is the main objective of having the MoU. But, unfortunately some groups or countries are reflecting their objections. This doesn’t have any harm on this country, but they don’t want to see the prosperity of Ethiopia and the region,” he noted.

The ambassador underlined that Ethiopia will follow peaceful ways and means to resolve this agenda. And Ethiopia doesn’t need only one port but multiple ports as indicated in the 10-Year Prospective Plan.

The country needs multiple ports in the region and hopes that the countries with the sea will understand the positive intentions of Ethiopia.