Eritrea orders border shutdown with Tigray

  • Security tightens at Bure/Assab border with Afar.
  • Afar youth blocked roads from Tigray.

26 Dec 2018- (EP) The unregulated border crossing between Ethiopia and Eritrea is finally closed this morning.

Two key crossing border points, Bure and Zalambessa (pictured) were officially opened following the rapprochement between the two countries on September 10, 2018.

Speculation was rife that the latter would be closed for ‘security’ reason after the failed assassination attempt on former Eritrean defence minister General Sibhat Ephrem in Asmara last week.

At Ethiopian side, border guards are asking federal or institutional permit to let people enter Eritrea. However, those in Ethiopia already can return to Eritrea without permission – and the other way around.

Economically, the unregulated trade at the border, where there appear to be little customs or immigration controls, risks opening a “shadow monetary front” where an exchange rate is being governed by largely speculative perceptions from both sides of the border.

Meanwhile, Afar youth have blocked roads from Tigray after Eritrea increased security at Bure border near Assab port city. The reopening at Bure border in Afar region was planned to give landlocked Ethiopia access to the sea.

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