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It is revealed that the recent UN sanctions resolution has failed to positively influence the behavior of Asmara. Indeed, circumstantial evidences suggest it has set the stage for the spread of Eritrea’s conventional frantic moves to new locations and revisit old theatres of conflict.

 Eritrea’s recent involvement in the conflict in Yemen along similar lines is now underway. The proposed sanctions regime has, so far, offered little incentives for Eritrea to take one step back and reevaluate its role in the Horn of African sub-region, the Red Sea included. Dealing with actual-potential spoilers in this part of the world requires more than dealing with Eritrea. Eritrea’s involvement in the internal politics and conflict in Yemen is not new. What seems doubtful, however, is that the recently agreed UN-backed sanctions on Eritrea will be enough to turn things around, for at least three reasons. And the current analyst wants to clearly identify this point and put all its weight on it. First, an effective sanctions regime on Eritrea is at least difficult, at best challenging.

 Second, even if it is implemented in a robust way (so far very little interest has been committed to do that), it will still be small and insignificant, relative to the situation of Eritrea, compared to other states, even in African standards. Third, it is not clear how much of the modalities will target the main instruments of Eritrea’s regional security/insecurity  strategy, most of which are shadow components of an informal state system –largely unregulated government structures including mobile task units and personal bank accounts-that are at the core of the problem. This particular problem is compounded by the good offices and facilities provided by a ‘different group’ of countries such as Qatar, Libya and Iran. The international community will not achieve the intended results unless it is willing to think clearly about the broader dimension of the problem and to follow those thought wherever they lead.

And one more thing: the position of Eritrea on Ethiopia and Djibouti has hardened. The nurturing of Djiboutian opposition groups is well underway. Hardly a day goes by without news of some further move by Asmara to bolster armed insurgency against its tiny neighbor. The Eritrea-Djibouti conflict has deeper roots than how Eritrea wants to position itself at the regional level. For more information on this go to the new updates on the nature and course of the conflict. Click the analysis, and the other analysis under the section-UN sanctions resolution on Eritrea.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 17 February 2010 17:27



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