Eritrea + 1 more

Eritrea-Ethiopia: Cash shortfall could delay border demarcation

ADDIS ABABA, 10 January (IRIN) - The UN's peacekeeping mission in Ethiopia and Eritrea is facing a cash shortfall which may delay border demarcation, the mission said on Friday.
The UN's Mission in Ethiopia and Eritrea (UNMEE) says that demarcation of the disputed border between the two countries will cost around US $7.6 million. But up until a few days ago, the Trust Fund - where money for demarcation is held - stood at US $3 million.

'Of course if there is a shortfall we may have to interrupt the demarcation process while we appeal for more funds,' an UNMEE spokeswoman said, speaking at the weekly video-link press briefing in Addis Ababa and Asmara.

However, she added that the US and Norway had each just pledged US $1 million, and the European Union had pledged a further US $1 million.

The Trust Fund was set up after Ethiopia and Eritrea signed a peace deal following their 1998-2000 border war. The money, which is contributed by UN member countries, is used to pay for delimitation and demarcation of the new border.

The spokeswoman urged the countries to follow up on their pledges so that demarcation - due to start later this year - would not be delayed.

The new 1,000 km border was drawn up in April last year after an independent commission was set up to resolve the dispute. The physical construction and marking of the border is expected to take between four and six months.


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