Foreign Relations Policy Tabled for Discussion

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Addis Ababa July 6/2019 A workshop that discusses the revised draft foreign relations policy of Ethiopia opened here today.

Foreign Affairs State Minister Markos Tekle told journalists that the revision was necessitated in order to incorporate the dynamic national, regional and international relations.

The policy had also unnecessary flaws that can be corrected, he added.

According to Markos, unlike the last policy that enlists particular issues for each country Ethiopia needs a general policy.

Above all, “this policy has considered the changing nature of our country’s role on sub-regional, continental and international issues,” he stressed.

A member of the working team in revising the policy, Professor Kasahun Birhanu said the policy emphasizes economic diplomacy and regional integration.

Continuing with the old policy issued over 16 years ago causes limitations, he noted.

“If we see neighboring Somalia, it is not at its present state stability. South Sudan was not even a country at the time. So the policy had nothing to say about South Sudan. This new policy will, however, consider these and other issues,” Professor Kasahun elaborated.

Besides, the old policy incorporated negative reflections on Eritrea and that does not have a place after the reconciliation, he stated.

The policy also put publicly particular descriptive statements on different issues with countries which has to be done internally not publicly, Professor Kasahun added.

Again, the revised policy has given emphasis to Ethiopians in the Diaspora, it was learned.

The revised policy is expected to be submitted to the Council of Ministers after a few weeks.

The draft Foreign Relations Policy will replace Ethiopia’s Foreign Affairs and National Security Policy and Strategy adopted in 2002.