New HQ for IGAD conflict resolution

Ethiopia is to be the headquarters for the newly formed Conflict Early Warning and Response Mechanism for the regional body, Inter-Governmental Authority on Development (IGAD).

The decision has been welcomed by the Ethiopian government. State Minister for Information Netsannet Asfaw told IRIN on Monday it was an important step but one that the country deserved.

The early warning and response system is designed to tackle conflicts in the Horn of Africa. It will reportedly focus on Somalia and the peace process in Sudan.

“This is very important work and IGAD is very important for Africa," Netsannet said. “If we work hard at this we should get good results which is very good for all the countries in IGAD.”

The decision to make Ethiopia the seat of the conflict early warning system was taken after a high-level meeting of IGAD members in Entebbe, Uganda, although the agreement still has to be ratified.

The conflict resolution scheme has been funded in part by the German Technical Cooperation (GTZ) and the US Agency for International Development (USAID).