Tag Archives: diplomacy

Taiwan-Somaliland diplomatic ties

Taiwan and the African region of Somaliland, which claims independence, will establish representative offices in each other’s capitals, Foreign Minister Joseph Wu said on July 8. Till present Taiwan has formal diplomatic ties with 15 countries because of pressure from the Communist China, which considers the island to be an integral part of its territory with no right to state-to-state relations.

However in February this year Taiwan signed the agreement with Somaliland, strategically located on the Horn of Africa, and Minister Wu added Taiwan’s contacts with Somaliland, a self-declared state internationally recognised only as an autonomous region of Somalia, dated back to 2009.

The top diplomat told reporters in Taipei that eight other nations or international bodies had representative offices in Somaliland, including Ethiopia, although not China.

“I think what we are doing is not much different from other countries,” Wu said, adding that Somaliland had declared independence in 1991 and since then held three democratic presidential elections.

“They have been recognised by many countries as a very free, democratic country in Africa,” the diplomat added. “So, in essence, Somaliland is an independent country.”

China’s influence is not far away, though, as it runs its first ever overseas military base in neighbouring Djibouti.

“International military forces, including those from China, patrol the waters around Somalia on anti-piracy missions.

China and Taiwan have traded barbs for years over the international recognition of the island.

In Africa only the Kingdom of Eswatini has established full diplomatic ties with Taiwan, however in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Embassy doors remain closed.

EU diplomacy on Malawi elections

Tomorrow, on 23 June 2020, the Malawian people will vote in fresh presidential elections after a protracted but constitutionally determined process. Malawi has a distinguished history of promoting and consolidating inclusive democracy, including by ensuring full respect of the constitutional mandates of national institutions, the statement of the European External Actions Service (EEAS) spokesperson reads.

The European Union joins the African Union in calling upon the Malawi Electoral Commission, all political parties, candidates and their supporters to create conditions for a credible, inclusive, transparent and peaceful election and to refrain from any act of violence.

The European Union will work with all actors in Malawi and with its partners, in particular the United Nations and the African Union, in accompanying this democratic process.

Greece expels Libya Ambassador

Libyan ambassador is expelled from Athens following the agreement between Libya and Turkey, signed on November 27, which maps out a sea boundary between the two countries, close to Crete island.

Mohamed Younis AB Menfi has 72 hours to leave the country, Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias told reporters on December 6. The Turkey-Libyan accord was a “blatant violation of international law,” Dendias said.

Ankara is backing Libya’s internationally recognized government in Tripoli.The agreement on maritime boundaries in the Mediterranean Sea between Turkey and the Chairman Fayez Al Sarraj administration could complicate disputes over energy exploration in the Eastern Mediterranean, where Turkish drilling has caused indignation of Greek Cypriots, Athens, and the EU.

Mogherini inaugurates EU mission in Nairobi

Today the European Union top diplomat – Federica Mogherini – inaugurates new premises of the EU Mission in Nairobi, Kenya.

The Delegation has the status of a diplomatic mission (Embassy or High Commission) and officially represents the European Union in Kenya. We promote the European Union’s (EU’s) values and interests, monitor the political, economic and commercial situation in the country and the region, oversee the various forms of cooperation between the EU and Kenya, and provide information about the EU’s relations with Kenya” the European External Action Service explains its mission. (Image above: Nairobi skyline).

The EU’s key values and interests can be summed up as: peace, people, prosperity, the planet, and partnership. Here in Kenya, the EU:

  • works together with Kenya, including through AMISOM, to promote peace in neighbouring Somalia;
  • supports democracy and devolution, helping to bring political power closer to ordinary people;
  • is Kenya’s biggest export market and a major source of private investment, as well as providing financing for Kenya’s infrastructure and rural development to spread greater prosperity in the country;
  • supports environmental conservation, which also has wider benefits for the planet;
  • works in partnership with Kenya both as a political partner (through regular political dialogue) and as a development partner (in coordination with other donors of assistance and the relevant Kenyan authorities).

US-UK diplomatic efforts in Libya

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo spoke with UK Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt  need of peace and stability in Libya as “global priority“. Both top diplomats reaffirmed their commitment to continued diplomatic efforts in Libya aiming at return to political process.

Tripoli: Foreign ministry attacked

The suicide bombers attacked the building Foreign ministry in Tripoli (Libya) on December 25, leaving three dead and nine wounded according to Health ministry sources.

The assailants are suspected to be Islamic State (Caliphate) militants. Three attackers opened fire, entered the building and blow themselves up.

There are reports of fire going on, and photos of a cloud of a dense smoke above the roof of the building.  The emergency services and security are working at spot.

Suicide bombers have targeted a number of institutions as militant groups take advantage of the collapse of the Libyan state after the assassination of the countries leader Colonel Qaddafi of 20 October 2011. Since then Libya has been fragmented, victim to political rivalry, and is widely considered to be a failed state.

AMENDED:

“The terror attack today against the Libyan Ministry of Foreign Affairs further threatens the fragile security situation in Tripoli. We offer condolences to the families of the victims and wish a quick recovery for those injured” – said the External Action Service spokesperson statement published 5:30 pm – 25 Dec 2018.

“This and similar attacks against the sovereign institutions of Libya are unacceptable and those responsible must be held to account. The Libyan people have suffered too much violence already, they deserve to live in a peaceful, stable and secure country.

“We expect all legitimate Libyan stakeholders to rally towards this goal by putting the interest of the Libyan people first. We continue to support the efforts by the UN Special Representative to implement the re-calibrated UN Action Plan to move forward with the transition and to end the political crisis in Libya.”

EU top diplomats focus on Libya

“First of all, we will hold a discussion on Libya. I just met with the UN Special Envoy [for Libya, Ghassan] Salamé in Brussels a couple of days ago, and I will report to the Ministers about the state of play in Tripoli, in Libya”, said EU top diplomat Federica Mogherini upon her arrival to the Council for EU foreign ministers in Luxembourg.

The European Union will search for the ways to reinforce the  support to the United Nations, both in political process, but also on economic reforms and on security arrangements.

There will  be separate discussion on the external work on illegal migration together with the UN Refugee Agency and of the  International Organisation for Migration IOM, headed by the newly elected IOM Director General António Manuel de Carvalho Ferreira, who will  join ministers by video conference from Geneva. While Filippo Grandi will arrive to Luxembourg meeting.

“We will focus on the different strands of work we have been putting in place, also in view of the European Council that is meeting in Brussels later this week. We will prepare the ground for the Prime Ministers and Heads of States to review the work we are doing and indicate where Member States are ready to do more, in which fields of action, on the external side of migration” Mogherini underlined.

Central African Republic (CAR) will be the other point of agenda, assessing the possible ways for aid to the country in ‘difficult conditions”, the diplomat underlined.

Russia to open representation in CAR

Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev has approved the draft agreement with the government of the Central African Republic (CAR) to open a representation of the Defense Ministry. The relevant document was published on the official web portal. (Image above: illustration).

To approve the draft agreement proposed by the Russian Defense Ministry and coordinated with the Russian Foreign Ministry and other relevant federal executive authorities… on establishing a representative office of the Russian Defense Ministry at the Ministry of National Defense and Restructuring of the Army of the Central African Republic,” the document said.

The prime minister ordered the Defense Ministry to hold talks with CAR representatives and sign a document upon reaching an agreement.

The draft agreement was put forward with the aim of providing assistance to CAR in the issues of military and military-technical cooperation, as well as ensuring the activities of Russian military specialists in the African country on assisting in restructuring the country’s Armed Forces, providing training on using and repairing the military equipment delivered by Russia. The maintenance of the representative office of the Russian Defense Ministry will be financed by the Russian side, the document added.

The agreement comes into force on the date of its signing and does not have an expiration date.

 

Eritrea and Ethiopia to re-establish diplomatic ties

Eritrea and Ethiopia intend to re-establish diplomatic and trade ties after decades of a protracted conflict.

Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed and Eritrean President Isaias Afwerki made the announcement during historic meeting hosted in Eritrean capital Asmara.

It is the first time the leaders from the two East African neighbours have met in almost two decades of a protracted territorial conflict.

Cut off sea Ethiopia, the second most populated country in Africa, slided into a protracted conflict with its former province Eritrea, which declared independence and established its control over the sea coast, impacting Ethiopia’ geopolitical and economic situation.

A peace deal was signed in December 2000. However, Ethiopia refused to accept the final ruling of a border commission two years later, which awarded disputed territory to Eritrea, including the town of Badme.

The countries have been on a war footing ever since.