Sudan, Ethiopia agree to deploy joint force to secure border – Xinhua

KHARTOUM, Jan. 16 (Xinhua) — Sudan and Ethiopia on Tuesday agreed to deploy a joint force to secure their joint border and prevent any hostile activities against the two countries.

A conference on development of border relations between Sudan’s Blue Nile State and Benishangul-Gumuz Region of Ethiopia concluded sessions Tuesday in Damazin, the capital city of Blue Nile State.

“The two sides agreed to secure the border … to pave way for the work of other joint committees,” Hussein Yassin Hamad, Blue Nile State Governor, said in a statement.

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He further reiterated Sudan’s commitment to protect peace and secure the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam (GERD) near the Sudanese border.

Governor of Benishangul-Gumuz Region, Al-Shazali Hassan, for his part, vowed to prevent any activity hostile to Sudan.

“We will fight any manifestations of smuggling of goods and weapons across the borders,” he said.

“We have agreed on deployment of joint forces between the Blue Nile State and the Benishangul-Gumuz Region as well as a civil administration conference between the two countries, particularly in border areas,” he added.

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Ethiopia is building the GERD in Benishangul-Gumuz Region near the Sudanese border, some 900 km northwest of the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa.

The GERD, extending on an area of 1,800 square km, is scheduled to be completed in three years at a cost of around 4.7 billion U.S. dollars.

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