ESAT News (January 25, 2016)
The Ethiopian government has resumed aerial reconnaissance survey to delineate the border between Sudan and Ethiopia, according to a source with the Information Network Security Agency, INSA. The Ethiopia government had agreed to give a large swath of agricultural land to Sudan amid uproar and indignation by Ethiopians who believe the land is historically theirs.
The source told ESAT that the first phase covers the land from Metema to Quara which is 365 km in aerial distance. The aerial reconnaissance survey covers Al-Fashaga, the land that the Sudanese Foreign Minister recently said was acknowledged by the Ethiopian authorities to be a Sudanese territory.
Al-Fashaga covers an area of about 250 square kilometers and it has about 600.000 acres of fertile lands.
The source said INSA is conducting the survey under the guise of development projects and has faced stiff resistance from the Ethiopian farmers in the area who, unlike their government, are determined not to giveaway their land. The farmers are reportedly removing the land marks experts were putting on their farmlands.
The expert went on to say that INSA, the government agency that is solely controlled by TPLF-Tigrayans, the ruling elites, was chosen to undertake the project when it should have been undertaken by the Ethiopian Mapping Agency, the office that’s legally entrusted to carry out such matters. INSA, the source said, is involved in giving away huge tracts of land to people in the higher echelon of the minority government and their close allies under the pretext of development projects, to augment the economic base of the ruling clique.