Jan 09 2018

Al Jazeera: Egypt deploys in Eritrea against Turkish expansion

Egypt has sent hundreds of troops to a United Arab Emirates base in Eritrea in response to Turkish expansion in the region, the Qatari media network Al Jazeera reports.

Turkey’s December 2017 deal with Sudan to take control of and rebuild a port island in the coastal city of Suakin provoked suspicion and harsh reactions from Arab politicians and journalists, who claimed the country was handing over its sovereignty to Turkey, as Ahval reported.

The move by Turkey was greeted especially coldly by Egypt, which shares a border with Sudan and whose President, Abdel Fattah Sisi, has been in a war of words with his Turkish counterpart Tayyip Erdoğan since ousting former Egyptian President Mohamed Morsi in a coup in 2013.

Egypt’s relations with Sudan had been equally fraught, Al Jazeera reports, due to allegations that the Sudanese government was sheltering members of the Muslim Brotherhood, an organisation banned as a terrorist group by Egypt and several of her allies.

Sudan responded to the arrival of Egyptian troops in Eritrea by recalling its ambassador to Cairo, closing the border with Eritrea, and deploying thousands of its own troops nearby.