Press Releases

    SG/SM/8342
    AFR/454
    26 August 2002

    SECRETARY-GENERAL WELCOMES ANNOUNCEMENTS
    OF COMMITMENTS BY ETHIOPIA, ERITREA TO
    RELEASE PRISONERS OF WAR

    NEW YORK, 23 August (UN Headquarters) -- The following statement was issued today by the Spokesman for Secretary-General Kofi Annan:

    The Secretary-General welcomes the announcements made by the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) about the commitments expressed by Ethiopia and Eritrea to release in the immediate future the remaining prisoners of war (POWs) in accordance with the Third Geneva Convention and the Algiers peace agreement of 12 December 2000. These commitments were made to the ICRC President, Jacob Kellenberger, during his current visit to the region.

    According to the ICRC, some 1,300 Eritrean POWs remain in Ethiopia and some 300 Ethiopian POWs remain in Eritrea. Their earliest release will no doubt contribute to the successful implementation of the peace process between the two countries.

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