Unease as Tigray crisis spills over into Eritrea
By Tasie Theodore
A state of unease has gripped the Horn of Africa following the missile attack by the embattled region of Tigray on positions in neighbouring Eritrea, The Difference has learnt.
The attack which is coming as part of the embattled regional government’s search for leverage in its civil war with the central government in Ethiopia is however raising the sceptre of a frontal retaliatory strike by Eritrea, with all of its implications for peace and stability in the long-troubled Horn of Africa region.
Already, the United States of America, the UN and the African Union have expressed their concern even as they urge all parties to ensure that they do everything to help de-escalate the tension and crisis.
Thousands of refugees have already been displaced on account of the conflict which is linked to the regional government’s protesting steps taken by the central government in Ethiopia to distort the country’s federal structure. Many have made their way into inflation-wracked Sudan, with the UN already warning of a grave humanitarian disaster that it says may just be plainly underway.
Analysts say that part of the provocation for the attack by the Tigrayan forces on Eritrea is the current level of closeness between the governments in Addis Ababa and Asmara. Indeed, unconfirmed reports say that Eritrean forces may have already been engaged in support of the central government in Addis Ababa in the ongoing conflict.
Another nation that is about being drawn into the conflict is the United Arab Emirates which presently maintains a military base in Eritrea and is said to have come under severe diplomatic pressure from the Abiy Ahmed-led government in Ethiopia to help it in crushing what it calls the act of defiance by the regional government players in Tigray.
Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed of Ethiopia