IOL News is reporting that South Africa and Eritrea are moving ahead with solidifying ties between the two countries. South Africa’s International Relations Minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane met with Osman Salih Mohammed, Eritrea’s International Relations Minister in Cape Town on Tuesday to discuss working together to develop business interests, which include mining, railway and tourism infrastructure, agro-processing and solar energy. According to the news item, Nkoana-Mashabane said, “We have signed a declaration of intent, which records our mutual intention to work towards enhancing bilateral relations.” This move is important because of the recent death of Ethiopia’s Prime Minister Meles Zenawi and the recent massacre of 34 striking miners by police near Rustenburg. Zenawi’s death may mean that already strained relations with Eritrea will become more difficult ensuring the continued need to seek out business development with other countries. The fallout from the massacre, coupled with the historically low wages and poor working conditions for miners, may mean public opposition to the proposed deals.
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