Ethiopia, Israel keen to deepen ties

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Addis Ababa, 17 June 2014 (WIC) – Ethiopia and Israel have agreed to further deepen all-round relations between the two countries.

Israel’s Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman is in Ethiopia where he met with Ethiopia’s Foreign Minister Tedros Adhanom (PhD). He is also scheduled to meet Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn and President Mulatu Teshome (PhD) later today.

The two Foreign Ministers today signed a memorandum of understanding at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Addis Ababa.

According to Hilawe Yosef, Ethiopia’s Ambassador to Israel, the memorandum of understanding incorporates political, economic and security cooperation.
At a joint press conference held after the signing, Tedros said Israel’s Foreign Minister has reiterated the country’s readiness to strengthen its support to Africa in fighting terrorism.

The security cooperation between Ethiopia and Israel includes intelligence sharing, Tedros added.

“Today’s discussion is on how we can further deepen our cooperation,” Tedros said.

Liberman, for his part, said the two countries have agreed to hold regular consultations between their ministries.

“We are in the best page of our bilateral relations which goes as far back as two thousand years during the Solomonic era,” Liberman said.
The visit also aims to boost economic ties between the two countries. More than 40 Israeli private businesses from the Israel Export Institute also accompanied Liberman, who is visiting Ethiopia for the second time in that capacity.

The businesses are drawn from various sectors including agriculture and water technology, energy and mining, life science, information technology, banking, homeland security, infrastructure, consultancy and aviation.

Earlier the two foreign ministers opened an Ethio-Israel business forum at the Sheraton Addis. The two day forum, jointly organized by Israel’s embassy in Addis Ababa and the Ethiopian and Addis Ababa Chambers of Commerce and Sectoral Associations, are aimed at boosting business to business ties between Ethiopian and Israeli companies.

The Israeli foreign minister, who is on Africa tour, will also visit Rwanda, Ivory Coast, Ghana and Kenya.