Demeke Discusses Bilateral, Regional Issues with Hungary’s Top Diplomat

Ethiopia’s Deputy Premier and Foreign Minister Demeke Mekonnen held talks with his Hungarian counterpart Péter Szijjárt in Addis Ababa on Tuesday.

The discussions were focused on bilateral, economic and international issues, according to the foreign affairs ministry of Ethiopia said in a statement.

Foreign Minister Demeke said that now is the time to strengthen Ethiopian-Hungarian diplomatic relations.

Addis Ababa has more than six decades of diplomatic relations and bilateral cooperation with Budapest.

Demeke also explained the successful implementation process of the Pretoria Peace Agreement to the visiting Hungarian minister.

In response, Foreign Minister Szijjárt said that Hungary is interested in economic and scientific cooperation, and will support Ethiopia’s peacebuilding and rehabilitation efforts.

The cooperation between the two countries includes higher education scholarships, investment in Ethiopian agriculture and digitalization, and economic cooperation.

Foreign Minister stated that Hungary is interested in signing an MoU in the fields of economy and civil aviation.

‘Preventing Migration Remains the Focus’

Several European senior officials made visits to Addis Ababa to discuss cooperation with the government of Ethiopia that they see key in preventing migration to Europe.

Speaking to Szijjárt, FM Demeke stated that his country is keen on strengthening ties with European Union, and its Member States including Hungary, calling on the parties to provide concrete support to Ethiopia.

Ethiopia is located on the migratory route from East Africa to Europe, and hosts nearly 900,000 refugees from neighboring countries, in addition to many more of its IDPs.

Zoltan Kovac, Hungary’s Secretary state of international communications, says his country views improving conditions in countries of origin as the best way to prevent migration.

“Cooperation between Hungary and Ethiopia is vital to achieving this goal,” Kovac said in a tweet.

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