Joy as Ethiopia-Eritrea border reopens

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A key crossing point between one-time bitter enemies Ethiopia and Eritrea has reopened after a border war shut it more than 20 years ago.

The leaders of the two countries witnessed the reopening at Burre, as part of their ongoing rapprochement.

eritrean-president-issaias-afewerki-and-ethiopian-prime-minister-Abiy-Ahmed-at the-ethio-eritrea-border-ethiopian-news-year-2011

This will give landlocked Ethiopia access to the port of Assab.

Another border post, near the Ethiopian town of Zalambessa and on the main road linking the two countries, is also set to reopen.

This follows a peace deal signed by Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed and Eritrean President Isaias Afwerki in July restoring diplomatic and trade relations.

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Deputy Chief Administrator of Tigray regional state, Dr Debretsion Gebremichael and other senior government officials from both countries are in attendance of the ceremony.

The reopening coincides with the Ethiopian New Year, adding to the festive atmosphere.

The war, fought over the exact location of the boundary between Ethiopia and Eritrea, began in May 1998 and left tens of thousands of people dead.

It ended in 2000 with the signing of the Algiers agreement. But peace was never fully restored as Ethiopia refused to implement a ruling by a border commission established by the agreement.

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