The Ethiopian Ambassador to Israel, Tesfaye Yitayih, reveals that the Israeli Government views Ethiopia’s potential acquisition of a military base positively, considering it a crucial step toward stabilizing the volatile region.
Furthermore, Israel does not oppose Ethiopia’s port deal with Somaliland, demonstrating a supportive stance.
In an exclusive interview with the Ethiopian Press Agency (EPA), Ambassador Tesfaye highlighted the positive gestures from Israeli officials towards Ethiopia’s ambition for direct access to the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden.
“Israel’s stand is not only to remain neutral, but they show us a supporting gesture. Owing to the longstanding partnership, Israel considers Ethiopia’s establishment of a naval force in the Gulf of Aden and the Red Sea as an opportunity to cooperate on stabilizing the strategic, yet volatile region,” Ambassador Tesfaye stated.
He emphasized that Israel’s foreign policy prioritizes mutual benefit, and the country’s support for initiatives aligns with its interests. The Ethio-Israel relationship remains strong, and the port deal with Somaliland is not expected to impact their political or commercial ties negatively.
The MOU signed on 1 January 2024 has created tension in the Horn of African region after Somalia government termed it illegitimate.
Somaliland, a breakaway region of Somalia, insists that the MOU will give them international recognition once Ethiopia starts acquiring the military base.