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Eritrea-Ethiopia Claims Commission renders final awards on damages

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The Eritrea-Ethiopia Claims Commission, established to "decide through binding arbitration all claims for loss, damage or injury by one Government against the other" related to the 1998-2000 conflict between them that "result from violations of international humanitarian law, including the 1949 Geneva Conventions, or other violations of international law," today rendered its Final Awards on Damages in each Party's Claims. The Final Awards award compensation in respect of claims by both Eritrea and Ethiopia for violations of international law previously found by the Commission in its fifteen Partial and Final Awards on liability, rendered between July 1, 2003 and December 19, 2005.

The armed conflict between these two Parties caused serious injury and damage to the people and infrastructure of these two countries, which the Commission recognized are among the poorest on earth. While the compensation awarded to each Party is substantial, the Commission recognized that it is probably much less than each Party believes it is due. The Commission stated: "The difficult economic conditions found in the affected areas of Ethiopia and Eritrea must be taken into account in assessing compensation here."

The Claims Commission was established pursuant to Article 5 of the Agreement signed in Algiers on December 12, 2000 between the Governments of the State of Eritrea and the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia.

The members of the Claims Commission are Professor Hans van Houtte (President), Judge George Aldrich, Mr. John R. Crook, Dean James Paul and Ms. Lucy Reed. The Permanent Court of Arbitration serves as Registry for the arbitration.

The Final Awards are being posted on the website of the Permanent Court of Arbitration ( The Commission's prior Partial and Final Awards on liability, as well as its Decisions and other relevant information, are also available on the PCA's website.