Ethiopian Airlines to resume flights to Eritrea in September

Ethiopian Airlines Bole Airport File

Ethiopia said, its flag carrier will resume commercial flights to Eritrea starting in September as a sign of improving relationship between the two countries two decades after a border conflict upended relations between the Horn of Africa neighbors.

“Ethiopian Airlines get ready because soon you’ll start going to Eritrea and coming back,” Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed said at a state dinner for a visiting Eritrean delegation in the capital, Addis Ababa. “Let us not transfer to our children hatred and the holding of grudges.

Ethiopian Airlines’ Chief Executive Officer Tewolde Gebre Mariam said flights would resume “as soon as formalities are completed.”

Eritrean President Isaias Afwerki, in power from 1993 when the Red Sea state seceded from landlocked Ethiopia, sent a delegation including Foreign Minister Osman Saleh for talks in Ethiopia after Abiy said he was keen on normalizing relations. This is the most significant development of the Abiy administration since he took power less than 3 months ago.

“Instead of thinking about killing people, instead of being sleepless, let us think of how to develop our countries together, how to be borderless and protect our region,” Abiy said.

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