Egypt-Saudi tension bubbling over planned Djibouti base

Saudi plans to open a military base in the tiny Rea Sea state of Djibouti have raised concerns among Egyptian officials, as strained relations between Cairo and Riyadh show little sign of improving. The base, which will

Saudi plans to open a military base in the tiny Rea Sea state of Djibouti have raised concerns among Egyptian officials, as strained relations between Cairo and Riyadh show little sign of improving.

The base, which will reportedly be built “very soon”, would threaten national security, and the Egyptian government is “deeply suspicious”, according to a diplomatic source.

Djibouti is strategically located in the Horn of Africa across the Gulf of Aden from Yemen, where the Saudis have been waging war against Houthi rebels. A recent UK report suggested that Iran has been smuggling weapons to the rebels via the waterways surrounding Yemen.

“Cairo is totally against the deal because it considers Djibouti to be under the Egyptian sphere of influence and because its location is important for national security,” an Egyptian diplomatic source, who spoke on the condition of anonymity, told The New Arab.

“This move goes against the generally accepted customs between Arab countries as the area has a direct influence on the passage of ships towards the Suez Canal.

“If Saudi Arabia wants to ensure that Iran does not take control of the area, that is understandable – however, this must take place with Egyptian oversight and permission.”

The Egyptian government was supported by billions of dollars in aid from Saudi Arabia in the immediate aftermath of the 2013 military coup against former Muslim Brotherhood leader Mohammad Morsi, but ties appear to have frayed between the two countries amid disagreements over Syria.

Saudi Arabia backs rebels trying to oust Assad, while Egypt has expressed support for the Syrian leader.

Saudi Arabia suspended oil shipments to Egypt in October, a move announced after Cairo backed a Russian-drafted resolution on Syria in the UN Security Council.

This week, sources told The New Arab that Saudi Arabia would not mend ties with Egypt until Foreign Minister Sameh Shukri was sacked and two contested Red Sea islands were transferred to Saudi sovereignty.

Djibouti’s Foreign Minister Mahamoud Ali Youssouf said the deal to build the Saudi military base would happen “very soon”.

“The security, military and strategic draft of the accord is ready and the coastal areas that could host the base, be it military or naval, have been identified after Saudi military officers and officials explored some areas in the country.”

The New Arab

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28 COMMENTS
  • Teclay December 12, 2016

    ጀሃዲ ስዑድያ ሴፉ ኣብሊሑ ናብ ቀርኒ ኣፍሪቃ ይግስግስ ኣሎ ።
    ናይ 60 ዓመታት ናይ ድንቁርናኻ ዋጋ ትግምግሞ ዶ ኣሎኻ ?? = በየናይ ኣዕምርኻ።
    እንበኣር ተዳሎ, ሳዑዲ ኮምፕዩተር ኣይፈልጡ ተክኖሎጂ ፣እንታይ ድ ኣ ኣላህ- ኣዋ -ክበር እናበልካ ብ ናይ 7ይ ክፍለ ዘበን, ናይ በደዊን ባርባርዊ ሕጊ ምቔራጽ እዩ።
    እዚ ኮንቶ ናይ ገድሊ ወሎዶስ፣ ራሻይዳ ሓውኹም ፣ ውሃቢ ሳዑድያ ፈታዊትና ……….ኣምሓሩ ተጋሩ ጸላእትኹም እናበለ ትምህርቲ ሰይጣን ክምህረርና ከሎ ምስ ኣዕምርኡ ድዮ ነይሩ ????
    ደንቆሮ ወለዶ ልኪምካ እዩ ዝጠፍእ።

  • Nior December 12, 2016

    I feel sorry for the Eritrean Christian tewaho , aby alka zeybelow abzi alku yebel. Saudi they do not know you. Except they know that your sisters use the for few reyle. What do not you try to solve your own problems in your own country. Relax mind your own business and mean your own bible. Never Wedi komarit sewa

  • Mike December 12, 2016

    It may not be politically correct to say it, but the lowlander Muslims are the greatest
    threat to Eritrea’s nationhood. The good thing is, Issayas knows this well and is watching
    them closely. He/Issayas is not a mug or a fool. He is only using the dirty Arab money to stay in power.
    Otherwise, once he is on good terms with America he will kick all the dirty Muslims and Arabs out of Eritrea.

    • Z, Hagos December 12, 2016

      Poor Mike. The other day you were blaming Isayas and calling him Ethiopian from Tigray. And today, you are blaming isayas for having hidden agenda in that he is using the Arab money in order to stay in power and once he gets strong enough has plans to get ride of those people he hates. By the way, those who hate Isayas include Muslims and Christians, who really care for their people and their country. Unlike you, a person with thousand tongs who doesn’t know what he is saying, Eritreans nowadays are discussing to find out why Isayas is behaving like he hates Eritrea and the Eritreans. You too, for sure, hate Eritrea and the Eritreans.

      • Mike December 12, 2016

        Pathetic Z, Hagos.
        Tragic with all the fantasy and half truths of wishful stories and lies that you tell.
        Don’t you know idiocy is an insulting description? Your’s is a case of “tinfer aytinfer
        tel eya”, type of exhausted and weak political opposition to Issayas has not worked
        and will never work with idiots and hopeless individuals like you on its side.
        As the old saying goes, ‘Bad friends, bad future’.
        With unstable friends like you poor Eritrea has a bad and very dark future indeed.
        Ironic isn’t it how Eritrea today has the most backward of everything : politics, economy, nasty and untrustworthy Muslims, and sold out oppositions like yourself.
        Sick minds never rise to the level of men of thought or of action.
        I would repeat in saying that Issayas is a temporary problem but the untrustworthy nasty Muslims are the longer and lasting damaging problems to poor Eritrea.

        • Z, Hagos December 12, 2016

          Are you for Isayas or against Isayas? If you are not for Isayas, you must be for Eritrea and the Eritreans. But you don’t appear to belong to any of them. You are just here on mission to create confusion. As a non-Eritrean, you don’t seem to care for all damages caused by Isayas. As a non-Eritrean, you are just trying to instigating and worsen things. As a non-Eritrean you are dancing to the tunes of the hurricanes and troubles caused by Isayas to the innocent Eritreans who don’t have any food to eat, any money to spend, any water to drink and any life to live. That’s why they are fleeing the country. And, you are happy seeing them cross the borders, seeing them die while crossing the borders, seeing them drown while crossing the seas. What!!! a criminal you must be? You are just worse than the criminal Isayas.
          ..
          You don’t even know where your belong. As a confused person, you are here to cause more confusion to the already caused confusions by your Isayas.

  • Z, Hagos December 12, 2016

    Those who are talking about religion rather the failure of the regime must be ashamed of themselves. You don’t have other than religion when you see the country being led to ruins and the youth being forced into disappearance beyond the borders.
    ..
    Be reasonable. For years you associated Isayas in terms of your interests. That interest could be based on regional, religious, economical, business favoritism, a permit to build a little house over a stole land, etc. etc. You are just interest bound people. Yesterday Eritreans suffered because those wicked interest centered people like you betrayed their people, and today just the same.
    ..
    Open your minds, open your eyes, and close your dirty mouths before you say or write dirty things. Don’t let the Eritrean issues be a pile of dirty laundries. Just clean your hands from crimes and clean your tongs from filthy words to give Eritreans the peace they need.
    ..
    If you can just advise your criminal friend Isayas to think thousand times before he takes the same repeated wrong direction putting the country on edge of the Somali like civil wars. By your words of this region and this religion, you already are into civil war. You declare that civil war and the Eritreans are smart enough to know how that civil war going eat you up. You only and only you to suffer from your action of dirty wishes for the Eritreans. So, stop your filthy thinking, your filthy talking, and your filthy writings.

  • Tesfai December 12, 2016

    Z.Hagos, since you are the only one with love, care and “full/pure Eritrean” fighting rigorously to free Eritrean from the oppression and captivity of DIA and higdefs (this is according to your non-stop claims on your comments),
    what is your vision for Eritrea and it’s people post DIA? Don’t just tell me that you will conduct elections every 4 yrs but I want a detailed account of how will you change the life of every working Eritrean family for the better then?
    You truly strike me as a confused and lost poor person. It is unbelievable that with your opposition (political) probable blessing some of your loser and traitor muslims are insulting our bible and you say absolutely nothing!
    Well, you should lay off the old tired intimidation and vilification intended to put people in a perpetual silence. Don’t you feel shame at all? What’s really wrong with you people?
    Your touch of so called opposition has sickening effect on Eritreans and especially on the poor young ones. I too agree that the muslims are the main cause of past, present and future Eritrea’s predicament/plight and its survival as a stable nation. But your opposition, not only did nothing to save Eritrea so far but has been busy for destroying it (Eritrea) the poor unfortunate nation.

    • PH December 12, 2016

      Tesfai, you seem to be idiot. diabolic,sense less, thug boy and coward. I am not defending any one but my well been brother hood including with you,

    • Z, Hagos December 12, 2016

      Tesfai,
      This is not my vision. It is all pro-democracy Eritreans’ vision:
      ..
      Our vision for post-tyrant Eritrea is: Just to immediately undo Isayasism’s dirty works. Eritrea of tomorrow, free of all Isayas’s dirty intrigues, will meet all the promises of the Eritrean revolution and will respect and treat the human Eritrean as a human-being.. If you hate any Eritrean, go back to where you came from. If you don’t believe in Eritrea for all Eritreans, you just pack and forget seeing Eritrea and Eritreans again and forever.

      • AHMED SALEH !!! December 12, 2016

        Confused people have a hardship to differentiate between politicians and ordinary
        civilians general population . Their ill will to wish for divided Eritrean society speaks
        the level of ignorance by choice . To deny anything that doesn’t resonate with their
        core beliefs creates a feeling that is extremely uncomfortable to any Eritrean .
        No wonder their language reveals ulterior motives which led us to suspect the source of distractors .
        Some might connect such idiots with HGDF puppets which doesn’t make a sense because they have nothing in common with Eritreans at all .

        • AHMED SALEH !!! December 12, 2016

          Z. Hagos
          Try to get used the punches thrown from everywhere by invisible ghost .
          He follows your comments but I don’t think you have any clue because to cover up actual identity a clown in disguise can confuse people easily . An overall change of appearance (make-up , masks , dress) had been the practice he excelled for long time in here .
          Do not get surprised to see more confrontations , he enjoy to provoke .

  • Degoli December 12, 2016

    Best quotes:

    Teklay writes::
    እዚ ኮንቶ ናይ ገድሊ ወሎዶስ፣ ራሻይዳ ሓውኹም ፣ ውሃቢ ሳዑድያ ፈታዊትና ……….ኣምሓሩ ተጋሩ ጸላእትኹም እናበለ ትምህርቲ ሰይጣን ክምህረርና ከሎ ምስ ኣዕምርኡ ድዮ ነይሩ ????
    ደንቆሮ ወለዶ ልኪምካ እዩ ዝጠፍእ።

    meretse writes :”“ሕማም ጎረቤት ተመሓላለፊ ኢዩ”
    እዚ ነዚ ሎሚ ኣብ ጎረባብቲ ሃገረ ኤረትራ (ሃገራት ኣዕራብ) ዝረኤ ዘሎ ህውከት ጽቡቕ ጌሩ ይገልጾ ኢዩ ዝብል እምንቶ ኣሎኒ። ኣብ ጎረቤትካ ሕማም እንተኣትዩ ፡ ብዝከኣለካ መጠን ትሕግዝ ብዝተረፈ ማዕጾ ኣይትከፍተሉን።
    ሎሚ ዝረኤን ዝስማዕን ዘሎ ግን መስደመም ኢዩ። ሃገርካ — ጥዕና ፣ ሰላም ፣ ጸጋ፣ … ክህልዋ ትትምነ እምበር ፡ ሃገርካ ንዓውዲ-ኹናት እንዳማትካ ድሕረ ግምባር ክትከውን ኣሕሊፍካ ምሃብ ናይ መጨረሻ ዕሽነት ኢዩ።”

    Teclay writes:
    ጀሃዲ ስዑድያ ሴፉ ኣብሊሑ ናብ ቀርኒ ኣፍሪቃ ይግስግስ ኣሎ ።
    ናይ 60 ዓመታት ናይ ድንቁርናኻ ዋጋ ትግምግሞ ዶ ኣሎኻ ?? = በየናይ ኣዕምርኻ።
    እንበኣር ተዳሎ, ሳዑዲ ኮምፕዩተር ኣይፈልጡ ተክኖሎጂ ፣እንታይ ድ ኣ ኣላህ- ኣዋ -ክበር እናበልካ ብ ናይ 7ይ ክፍለ ዘበን, ናይ በደዊን ባርባርዊ ሕጊ ምቔራጽ እዩ።

  • Simon G. December 14, 2016

    Isayas: simply a master of destruction!

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