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IBRU: Centre for Borders Research

Boundary news

Boundary news Headlines

Security Council agrees resolution on Djibouti-Eritrea border dispute

(16 January 2009)

On 14 January 2009 the United Nations Security Council passed a resolution concerning the border confrontation between Djibouti and Eritrea. Resolution 1862 (2009), drafted by French officials, was unanimously adopted and strongly recommended that Eritrean forces should withdraw from their positions along the disputed boundary within five weeks to the locations situated before June 2008. Although yet to be released publicly, reports indicate that the resolution also urges both nations to solve their territorial issues peacefully and that there should be no military presence or activity in the Ras Doumeira peninsula area and on Doumeira Island area.

Skirmishes between Djiboutian and Eritrean forces broke out on 10 June 2008 and have intermittently occurred since. Djibouti has withdrawn troops from the area in accordance with the presidential statement of 12 June 2008, but Eritrea has as yet to pull out their military presence. Reports imply that the new Security Council resolution goes further in urging Eritrea to engage actively in dialogue and defuse the tension through diplomatic efforts leading to a mutually acceptable settlement of the border issue, and to cooperate fully with the Secretary-General’s good offices. Eritrea did not grant visas to UN officials dispatched on fact-finding missions concerning the dispute in September 2008.

UN Security Council Resolution 1862 (2009).

Sources:‘Security Council Urges Djibouti, Eritrea to Resolve Border Dispute Peacefully Unanimously Adopting Resolution 1862 (2009)’, US Fed News, 14th January 2009; ‘UN in Eritrea pull-out Ultimatum’, BBC News 14 Januray 2009; ‘President of Djibouti Urges Security Council to Press Eritrea on Ending Border Dispute, Says ‘The Last Thing The Horn of Africa Needs is Another Conflict’’, US Fed News; 23 October 2008.