ADDIS ABABA – Having the vision to build modern and stronger armed forces, the government of Ethiopia decided to build naval base in adjacent to the Red Sea and the Indian Ocean, according to Deputy Chief of Staff of the Ethiopian Armed Forces.
Speaking to the Ethiopian Press Agency, General Berhanu Jula said that the leadership of Prime Minister Dr. Abiy Ahmed has a vision that Ethiopia will build stronger maritime forces armed with modern technologies.
General Berhanu said that as Ethiopia is a big country and has the strongest army in the Africa, the incumbent has come up with a plan to establish naval forces.
“Although we do not have a sea outlet, we are very closer to the Red Sea and the Indian Ocean. Now, we witnessed that many countries have showed a growing desire to build naval bases in Somalia, Djibouti, Puntland, and Eritrea and we can build our navy, standing 60 km away from the coast.”
Since Ethiopia primarily uses the Red Sea ports for its import-export trade, it is commendable that the country has built a new structure for the Ethiopian Navy, General Berhanu added.
“We are consulting with other countries regarding the naval reinstatement, capacity, and structure. Countries which acquired possessions around the Red Sea and Indian Ocean provide naval bases for other countries, so that, it is a strategic decision that Ethiopia has to develop maritime power within its proximity.”
“Taking a Navy site around the sea, we can ensure our benefit from the sea and help us empower our capacity to defend foreign attacks. That is the reason that Prime Minister Abiy stressed the significance of the re-establishment of the Ethiopian Navy,” General Berhanu added.
He also said: “We must show our influence around the sea. Different countries are coming from far and creating influences on the sea. We are a great nation with over 100 million people. There is no any reason Ethiopia remains landlocked.”
The government is working aggressively on the reestablishment of the Ethiopian Navy to be powerful and stronger with modern technology and equipment, he added.
Following Eritrea’s secession in 1991, Ethiopia has no naval forces for 27 years.