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Leaders Vow to Help End Conflicts in East Africa

East African leaders from the seven-member Inter-governmental Authority on Development (IGAD) have pledged to get more involved to end conflicts in the region. The leaders ended a one day summit Friday in the Ugandan capital, Kampala, with a pledge to focus on the Somalia peace talks and the growing tension between Ethiopia and Eritrea. The leaders decided to include all seven members in the Somali peace talks. Until now only Somalia’s immediate neighbours – Ethiopia, Kenya and Djibouti – were directly involved in the talks among the various Somali factions. Somalia has been without a central government since 1991, when long time President Mohammed Siad Barre was overthrown. The leaders also decided that their regional grouping, along with the African Union, will take a leading role in tackling a renewed border dispute between Ethiopia and Eritrea. The two countries fought a two-year border war that ended in 2000 with an agreement for a new border drawn by an independent commission. Ethiopia has objected to the new border. Full Story

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