Written by Umamah Bakharia
China has offered to play the role of mediator to resolve disputes in the Horn of Africa, on the opening day of a regional gathering in the Ethiopian capital.
The Horn of Africa namely consists of Djibouti, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, Sudan, South Sudan and Uganda. Beijing says it’s determined to play a greater role in a region beset by conflict and security issues.
Speaking to Radio Islam, geopolitical analyst, Damimola Olawuyi says China’s presence in Africa traces back centuries.
“China’s entry into the Horn of Africa is actually an extension of an initiative- where they have been investing in transport infrastructure projects in Africa and Asia,” says Olawuyi.
This can be seen as China’s best way to ensure trade security in the regions that Beijing invests in. So far, China does have a hand to play in many African countries such as Ethiopia which already has 400 working construction sites in the country.
“The diplomatic success of such mediations is up in the air,” say Olawuyi as the Horn of Africa anticipates what China’s next move will be.
Since the cold war, the Horn of Africa has been a troubled part of the world with ongoing conflict. Italy, UK and the US have been some of the counties that have been trying to foster peace talks in the region.
“China is simply another in a long line of powers walking in the region,” he says.