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Kenya and Ethiopia tightens diplomatic relations amidst state visit

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Kenyan President William Ruto welcomed Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed to Nairobi on Wednesday, in what is the Ethiopian leader’s first state visit to Kenya since 2020. Both leaders were expected to discuss amongst several issues Ethiopia’s negotiations with the breakaway region of Somaliland to secure access to a seaport.

Ethiopia signed a memorandum of understanding with Somaliland on Jan. 1, a document that’s rattled Somalia whose authorities have vowed to go war over it especially since it considers Somaliland part of its territory. On its part, Somaliland says Ethiopia agreed to recognise its independence in return for a naval port.

Abiy Ahmed’s visit to Nairobi also comes after that of President Ruto to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia’s capital, for the 37th African Union Summit of Heads of State and Government on Feb 16.

Ethiopia and Kenya concluded a strategic framework to promote bilateral cooperation in key areas of economic and social development. 

The agreements signed then include removing unnecessary checkpoints, customs protocol and systems at the Moyale One-Stop Border Post between both nations

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