Ethiopia: Kenya Cooperates to Crush Rebels


November 24, 2007: Last week, Ethiopia and Kenya have formally agreed to coordinate security operations against Oromo National Liberation Front (ONLF) rebels operating along the Ethiopia-Kenya border. Both countries have been informally cooperating for several months. The Kenyans see the ONLF as a potential troublemaker among Kenyan border tribes, and Kenya already has enough trouble along its Somalia frontier. Essentially, Kenya will attempt to locate and eliminate any bases or support facilities the ONLF has in Kenyan territory. Most likely the ONLF fighters have weapons caches and rest areas, and not a sophisticated support base structure. This public agreement is a political victory for the Ethiopians. Kenyans in the border area have, for some time, complained about "spill-over" trouble from Ethiopia. If the locals provide good tips, the Kenyan police will find the ONLF's hideouts.

November 17, 2007: The Ethiopian Army claimed that it had killed over one hundred ONLF rebels operating in the eastern Ogaden region (the Warder area). The operations were conducted by the army's 12th Division.

November 15, 2007: The UN Security Council issued a formal statement that called on Eritrea and Ethiopia to "implement without delays" the binding 2002 border demarcation agreement. Eritrea contends that the UN and "the international community" have failed to enforce the agreement. The town of Badme is the center of contention. The demarcation decision awarded Badme to Eritrea. Ethiopia rejects that decision, even though the agreement was supposed to be binding on both countries. Over the past year the UN has drawn down its observer mission (UNMEE), but still deploys 1700 peacekeepers who are monitoring the border area.

November 10, 2007: Eritrea told the UN that Ethiopia was responsible for the failure to implement the 2002 border agreement.


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