By T. Roble
Kenya’s president Uhuru Kenyatta Sunday arrived at the Eritrean capital Asmara alongside Ethiopia’s Abiy Ahmed in what could signify Kenya’s inclusion in the new Horn of African club spearheaded by the Ethiopian Prime Minister.
According to the state-owned Fana Broadcasting, Kenyatta and Ahmed arrived in separate aircraft at the Red Sea nation for a Tripartite Summit and were received by their host president Isaias Afwerki.
Eritrea’s Information Minister Yemane Meskel said in a tweet the three leaders ‘will discuss timely regional issues in a Tripartite Summit today while bilateral matters will also feature in separate meetings.’
The latest entry of President Kenyatta into the Horn of Africa talks which had hitherto included Somalia’s Mohamed Farmaajo and Afwerki could bolster the merger of interests among countries which had for a long time shared little economic and political interests.
Djibouti so far remains outside of the talks despite diplomatic overtures by the three countries. Both Djibouti and Eritrea have border disputes over the Dumeira islands in addition to tussles over prisoners of war. Djibouti last year sought the help of the United Nations to develop the framework for the resolution of the border dispute through the International Court of Justice.
It is not clear whether the inclusion of President Kenyatta into the Horn of Africa club could form the basis for talks between Kenya and Somalia to resolve the ongoing diplomatic tiff over the maritime row.
Prior to flying to Asmara, Kenyatta had led a delegation of Kenyan investors and minister to Ethiopia for a trade summit.