AFRICAREVIEW .The African Union will send a mission to Asmara to help ease the tension between Eritrea and Djibouti following the withdrawal of the Qatari troops from their disputed border region.
The AU Commission Chairman, Dr Moussa Faki, made the announcement at the African Heads of State Summit in Addis Ababa on Tuesday.
Dr Faki recalled that the Qatari troops left the disputed region a few weeks ago, after controlling it since 2010 as part of the mediation process.
He said the Commission had sent a mission to the contested area following an appeal by Djibouti.
“Our concern is to make sure that we decrease the tension and find a solution…We are calling on all parties to remain calm…We will implement the mechanisms enshrined on out text of the African Union in consultation with Igad [the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development],” he said.
Qatar withdrew from the disputed area and notified Djibouti of the cessation of their role in the mediation, according to the AU chairman.
The two Horn of African nations in June 2010 accepted the Qatari offer to mediate the border conflict between them.
Reports indicate that the dispute between Djibouti and Eritrea began in June 2008 when Asmara soldiers penetrated the tiny neighbouring state in pursuit of deserters.
The disputed area includes a hill called Gabla or Ras Doumeira, and a small island called Doumeira, deserted except for the occasional fishermen who use it as a stopover point.