Eritrea accused Ethiopia of “military aggression” by attacking its positions in the Tsorona Central Front, a border area that saw one of the bloodiest battles during their 1998-2000 border war. Ethiopia’s military said its troops were provoked into launching a counter-offensive after Eritrean forces fired into Ethiopian positions on Sunday.
The U.N. chief met Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn in Brussels on Wednesday and Deputy Secretary-General Jan Eliasson phoned Eritrean Foreign Minister Osman Saleh Mohammed.
“They urged both Governments to exercise maximum restraint and refrain from any act or statement that could exacerbate the situation,” U.N. spokesman Stephane Dujarric said.
“They also called on both governments to resolve their differences through peaceful means, including by ensuring the full implementation of the peace agreement they signed in 2000,” he said.
Dujarric said the U.N. is available to assist in any peace efforts.
Eritrea and Ethiopia have been feuding over their border since Eritrea gained independence from the Addis Ababa government in 1993 after a 30-year guerrilla war.