Sudan to reopen border with Eritrea

The Sudanese government has agreed to reopen the country’s eastern border with Eritrea.

The border has remained closed for over a year.

Sudan president Omar al-Bashir announced the move earlier in the week in a move aimed at strengthening ties between the two countries.

Bashir had ordered the frontier closed in January 2018 after he announced a state of emergency in the eastern region of Kassala to fight arms and people smuggling.

“I announce from Kassala the opening of the border with Eritrea,” Bashir said on Thursday at a televised rally of loyalists in the regional capital near the frontier.

“Politics can divide us but still they (Eritreans) are our brothers and relatives,” he said, without giving more details on the decision.

The closing of the border last year was part of a government campaign to disarm organised people smuggling gangs that Khartoum has blamed for the transit of migrants from the Horn of Africa towards Europe.

Bashir’s address to the rally in Kassala came as he remains defiant in the face of nationwide protests against his three-decade rule that have rocked Sudan for weeks.