Ethiopian Official Denies Report its Army Crossed Border into Somalia 20 Nov 20, 2011 - 1:36:22 AM
Spokesman with the Ethiopian Ministry of Foreign Affairs told Xinhua on Sunday that the country's troops did not enter Somalia, denying an earlier report.
Earlier reports claimed that Ethiopian troops in a convoy of more than 20 military vehicles had crossed over into neighboring Somalia, joining the war against Al-Shabaab in the Horn of Africa country.
Asked about the reports, Dina Mufti, Spokesperson of the Ethiopian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, said Ethiopian troops did not enter Somalia.
He said that the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) Heads of State would meet in the coming week to deliberate on current issues in Somalia here in Addis Ababa, capital of Ethiopia.
The Somali ambassador in Ethiopia could not be immediately reached.
The latest development came as the joint military operations are being undertaken by Kenyan and Somali troops against the rebel militants in the southern provinces after the two countries accused the Al -Shabaab of being behind a wave of abductions of foreigners.
Ethiopian troops withdrawn from Somalia in 2009 after two years of presence during which they fought with insurgency led by the radical Islamist group of Al-Shabaab.
The group has been successfully driven out of the Somali capital Mogadishu following a major offensive by Somali government forces backed by African Union peacekeeping troops based in the capital.
The Al-Shabaab fighters currently control much of the south and center of the wear ravaged horn of African nation while internationally recognized Somali government runs only the capital and few parts in the south of the country.