Djiboutian President Ismail Omar Guelleh (L) and Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn attend the press conference at the National Palace in Addis Ababa, capital of Ethiopia, March 17, 2017. (Xinhua/Michael Tewelde)
ADDIS ABABA, March 20 (Xinhua) -- Ethiopia and Djibouti have expressed desires to take their strong bilateral relations to a greater height.
The announcement was made on Friday when the visiting Djiboutian President Ismail Omar Guelleh held talks with Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn in Addis Ababa, capital of Ethiopia.
The two East African countries have signed agreements on extradition and on mutual legal assistance on criminal matters, and a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) on cooperation in the fields of justice and legal training.
They have expressed commitment to ensuring the implementation of various agreements signed between the two countries at various times.
Desalegn and Guelleh have expressed commitment to further extending and cementing the bilateral relations by deepening, diversifying, and widening the scope of cooperation.
Acknowledging that free movement of people and goods is pre-requisite to expedite economic integration between the two countries, they also called for rapid operationalization of the recently inaugurated railway between Addis Ababa and Djibouti.
Alarmed by the humanitarian crisis caused by drought that has affected the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) region, the two leaders called upon IGAD member states to stand together to withstand the looming disaster.
They also appealed to the international community and humanitarian agencies to deliver assistance to the affected people in a matter of urgency.
The Djiboutian president has been on an official visit to Ethiopia from March 16 to 18.