African Union Welcomes Eritrea's Release of Djiboutian Prisoners

The African Union said Eritrea’s release of four Djiboutian prisoners is a positive step in improving relations between the neighboring nations, which fought a three-day war in 2008.

The four were released after mediation efforts by Qatar, according to United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon’s office. African Union Commission Chairwoman Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma said Monday their freeing was a move in the “right direction” in the process of the two Horn of Africa countries normalizing relations.

A territorial dispute between Djibouti and Eritrea led to fighting in June 2008. Twelve Djiboutian and an undisclosed number of Eritrean soldiers were killed. Qatari forces were deployed in the disputed areas and the UN has urged a peaceful resolution.

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