Ambassador: Eritrea Harbors no Hostile Intentions towards Sudan
Eritrea does not harbor any hostile intentions towards Sudan, the country's ambassador to Khartoum said in remarks published Saturday, after Khartoum accused Asmara of supporting Sudanese rebels.
Ambassador Eissa Ahmed Eissa denied the presence of armed Sudanese factions in Eritrea crossing the border to attack Sudanese government forces, the independent Al-Sahafa daily reported.
"The troop concentrations seen on the border are ordinary movements by the Eritrean army, not connected with Sudan, and are necessitated by the war circumstances Eritrea is presently experiencing," said the ambassador.
Fighting between Eritrea and Ethiopia stopped last month when they signed an accord to halt a war, which started in May 1998.
The governor of Sudan's eastern Kassala state, Ibrahim Mahmud Hamid, was quoted last week as accusing Eritrea of backing a planned Sudanese rebel offensive against his region.
He accused Eritrea of "planning and carrying out military operations for the rebel movement," the Sudan People's Liberation Army, the independent Al-Sahafi Al-Dawli newspaper reported on Tuesday.
Eissa said his country would "never think of any act against Sudan's interest."
The ambassador took up his post in Khartoum about a month ago. Before that there was a charge d'affaires in the Eritrean embassy in Khartoum.
He said Eritrea was not concerned by a development in Sudan's ties with their mutual neighbor Ethiopia.
"Eritrea is concerned with the territorial integrity of the Sudan and will spare no effort in achieving this goal," Eissa said.
Sudan's Defence Minister Bekri Hassan Salih was in Asmara on Thursday for talks with his Eritrean counterpart Ephrem Sebhat during which they reportedly agreed to secure their common border after the Sudanese allegations - KHARTOUM (AFP)
© 2000 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)