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Eritrean officials visit Ethiopia for first time in 20 years

June 26, 2018 4:10 pm

The first high-level Eritrean delegation to visit Ethiopia in decades has arrived for a meeting which could ease military tension.

Eritrea won independence from Ethiopia in 1993 after a 30-year conflict – but a border war five years later killed tens of thousands.

Diplomatic ties have been cut between the two countries for almost 20 years.

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Last week, Ethiopia’s prime minister said he would accept a peace deal awarding Eritrea disputed territory.

The deal, agreed by a border commission in 2002, had never formally been accepted by Ethiopia.

It is just one of a series of reforms Abiy Ahmed, who became prime minister after his predecessor resigned in February, has enacted since he took power.

On Sunday, a political rally he attended was hit by a grenade blast which killed two people and injured dozens, though Mr Ahmed was uninjured.

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The Eritrean delegation, led by Foreign Minister Osman Saleh, was welcomed by Mr Abiy in the capital Addis Ababa, where a red carpet was rolled out and the visitors were offered garlands of flowers.

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